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Fulgent Genetics Q4 Revenues Slide 27 Percent

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Fulgent Genetics reported after the close of the market on Wednesday a 27 percent drop in revenues year over year for the fourth quarter.

For the three months ended Dec. 31, 2017, the Temple City, California-based genetic testing firm posted $4.3 million in revenues, down from $5.9 million in Q4 2016.

In a statement, Fulgent CFO Paul Kim said that the company saw "good momentum" in test revenues, driven by the launch of the Beacon carrier screening test. "Due to the timing of revenue recognition on these tests during the quarter, we largely did not record revenue from these tests during the quarter, which impacted our revenue level for the quarter," he said.

For Q4 2017, Fulgent recorded a net loss of $1.8 million, or $.10 per share, compared to a profit of $813,000, or $.05 per share, in Q4 2016. On an adjusted basis, Fulgent had a net loss per share of $.06 in the recently completed quarter.

Its R&D costs rose 59 percent year over year to $1.3 million from $818,000 in Q4 2016. Fulgent's SG&A spending grew 26 percent to $2.4 million in the recently completed quarter from $1.9 million a year ago.

During full-year 2017, the company's revenues went up 2 percent to $18.7 million from $18.3 million.

Fulgent narrowed its net loss for the year to $2.7 million, or $.15 per share, from a net loss of $5.4 million, or $1.00 per share, in 2016. Adjusted net loss per share for 2017 was $.03.

The company's R&D spending rose 17 percent year over year to $4.2 million from $3.6 million, while its SG&A costs spiked 32 percent to $9.4 million from $7.1 million.

The company said that it ended 2017 with $6.5 million in cash and cash equivalents, and $34.9 million in investments in marketable securities.

"We experienced some challenges this year that impacted our results, including our sales reorganization and initiation of business by our joint venture in China," Fulgent Chairman and CEO Ming Hsieh said in a statement, referring to its deal with Chinese firms Xilong Scientific and Fuzhou Jingiang Investment Partnership to establish Fujian Fujun Gene Biotech. "We are working through these challenges and we believe we are well position to capitalize on an opportunity to drive growth in 2018." 

Piper Jaffray analyst William Quirk downgraded Fulgent's shares Neutral from Overweight, noting "another quarterly miss" by the company. He said that the company is guiding to revenues of "at least $20 million" for full-year 2018 "which appears relatively reasonable ... but after a year of significant disapointment (on top of a limited track record as a public company" we have limited visibility into the turnaround and thus have diminished confidence in management."