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Opko Health Posts 19 Percent Drop in Q4 Revenues on COVID-19 Testing Decline

NEW YORK — Opko Health on Thursday reported a 19 percent year-over-year drop in revenues for the fourth quarter amid a continued slide in COVID-19 testing volume.

For the three-month period ended Dec. 31, 2021, Opko's revenues fell to $401.3 million from $494.6 million in the year-ago quarter. Despite the decline, the revenues far exceeded Wall Street analysts' consensus estimate of $329.8 million.

Service revenues were down 21 percent to $362.8 million from $457.9 million in Q4 2020, while product sales edged up 15 percent to $35.3 million from $30.8 million. Opko noted that its BioReference Laboratories unit processed 2.7 million COVID-19 PCR tests in the fourth quarter, 23 percent more than the 2.2 million processed in the third quarter but 37 percent fewer than the 4.3 million processed in the fourth quarter of 2020.

GeneDx posted revenues of $33.1 million during the recently completed quarter compared to $20.3 million a year ago.

Last month, Opko struck a deal to sell its GeneDx clinical genomics and genetic testing business to Sema4 for around $623 million in cash, stock, and milestone payments. With the transaction, Opko is largely exiting day-to-day activity in molecular diagnostics, but it will retain other clinical diagnostics assets and hold a significant equity stake in Sema4.

Opko posted a net loss of $73.8 million, or $.11 per share, versus a year-ago profit of $32.3 million, or $.05 per share, missing analysts' average expectation of a $.02 loss per share.

Contributing to the loss was a 20 percent rise in its R&D spending to $21.0 million in Q4 2021 from $17.5 million a year ago, as well as a 36 percent increase in SG&A expenses to $138.2 million from $101.8 million.

At the end of 2021, Opko had cash and equivalents totaling $134.7 million.

For the full-year 2021, Opko's revenues rose 24 percent to $1.77 billion from $1.44 billion the prior year, slightly exceeding analysts' consensus estimate of $1.7 billion. Service revenues were up 27 percent in 2021 to $1.61 billion from $1.26 billion in 2020, while product revenues increased 18 percent to $141.8 million from $120.0 million.

Opko reported a full-year 2021 net loss of $30.1 million, or $.05 per share, compared with a net profit of $30.6 million, or $.05 per share, in 2020. Wall Street had been expecting the Miami-based company to see a net profit of $.04 per share for the year.

Its full-year 2021 R&D expenses increased 2 percent to $76.8 million from $75.3 million and its SG&A costs rose 32 percent to $468.9 million from $355.6 million the year before.