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Fluidigm's Q1 Revenues Climb 30 Percent

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Fluidigm reported after the close of the market Tuesday that its first-quarter revenues increased 30 percent year over year, with product sales up 34 percent.

The South San Francisco, Calif.-based firm had total revenues of $8.7 million for the three-month period ended March 31, compared to $6.7 million for the first quarter of 2010. Its instrument sales climbed to around $5 million from $4.1 million, while its consumables revenues were $3.5 million versus $2.1 million.

The firm noted that revenue from grants and collaborations was 37 percent lower than the prior year first quarter primarily due to reduced activity under its Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB) grant agreement as it approach the end of the grant period. Grant and other revenue was $285,000 versus $452,000 for Q1 2010.

Analysts, on average, had expected revenues of $8.4 million.

Fluidigm's net loss for the quarter was $17.2 million, or $1.60 per share, compared to a net loss of $5.6 million, or $3.02 per share, for Q1 2010. The quarter included a charge of $9.9 million related to a decrease in the conversion price of Series E convertible preferred stock.

On a non-GAAP basis, Fluidigm's net loss for Q1 2011 was $3.7 million, or $.35 per share. It missed analysts' consensus estimate for a loss of $.29 per share.

The firm's R&D spending for the quarter was flat at around $3.2 million, while its SG&A spending increased 21 percent to $7.4 million from $6.1 million.

"We experienced strong interest in single-cell genomics, genotyping consumables, and sample preparation for next-generation sequencing," Fluidigm President and CEO Gajus Worthington said in a statement. "More than half of the BioMark and new BioMark HD Systems sold during Q1 are being used to conduct single-cell research."

"From a pure research standpoint, single-cell genomics is perhaps our most exciting opportunity," Worthington said on a conference call following the release of the results. "We believe that our BioMark HD platform offers a significant performance advantage over any competing platform for single-cell genomics."

The firm launched the BioMark HD system during the quarter. Worthington said the new system has features specifically aimed at single-cell genomics research, including a simple workflow and faster processing speed.

Fluidigm also this week launched new assays for gene expression profiling, SNP genotyping, and target-specific primers for next-generation sequencing. Worthington said these new products should help with growth of instrument revenues in the near term and "in the medium term allow us to participate significantly in the assays and primers revenue stream … which we don't participate in today."

Fluidigm finished the quarter with cash and cash equivalents of $55.8 million and available-for-sale securities of $21.9 million.

For full-year 2011, Fluidigm expects to report year-over-year product revenue growth of 27 percent to 30 percent, an increase from its previous forecast of 25 percent to 27 percent.

In early Wednesday trade on the Nasdaq, shares of Fluidigm were up 3 percent at $16.38.

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