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Meridian Bioscience Fiscal Q2 Revenues Rise 3 Percent

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Meridian Bioscience Thursday morning reported a 3 percent uptick in fiscal second quarter revenues bolstered by growth in its Diagnostics segment and particularly sales of its Illumigene product line.

For the three months ended March 31, the Cincinnati-based diagnostics and life science research tools firm reported revenues of $51.5 million compared to $50.1 million in fiscal Q2 2014, and beating analysts' consensus estimate of $50.4 million. On a currency-neutral basis, revenues increased 6 percent year over year.

Meridian's Diagnostics segment reported revenues of $38.7 million, up 4 percent from $37.1 million in the year-ago period. On a constant-currency basis, growth for this segment was up 7 percent year over year.

Growth in the segment was paced by the company's portfolio of Illumigene isothermal amplification-based molecular diagnostic products, which recorded its first $10 million quarter, Meridian noted. During the quarter, the company added 33 new Illumigene customers, and the products are currently in use in approximately 1,400 laboratories.

In February, Meridian launched Illumigene Chlamydia and Illumigene Gonorrhea, its sixth and seventh Illumigene tests, in markets outside the US. Earlier this month the company filed a 510(k) application with the US Food and Drug Administration of Illumigene HSV I & HSV II for diagnosing herpes simplex virus infections.

Revenues in Meridian's Life Science segment fell 1 percent in fiscal Q2 to $12.9 million from $13.1 million in the year-ago period, primarily due to a very strong performance a year ago, the company said. On a currency-neutral basis, revenues for this segment increased 1 percent. The Bioline molecular components arm of the Life Science segment reported 5 percent revenue growth at constant currency and introduced five new products for RNA testing in the quarter.

Meridian turned a net profit of $10.1 million, or $.24 per share, in fiscal Q2 2015, compared to $10.3 million, or $.24 per share, in the same quarter last year. EPS was in line with the consensus analysts' estimate. In a statement, CEO John Kraeutler said that net earnings were down 2 percent year over year "as investment spending increased to maintain our organic growth capabilities into the future."

Meridian's R&D spending grew 6 percent to $3.4 million while its SG&A expenses also rose 6 percent to $13.4 million. The company finished the quarter with cash and equivalents of $42.7 million.

For Fiscal Year 2015 Meridian reaffirmed its guidance of $193 million to $200 million in revenues and EPS between $.85 and $.91.

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