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Sage Therapeutics Rises After Swing to Profit on Biogen Deal

Sage Therapeutics traded higher after the biopharma posted a fourth-quarter profit, benefiting from its collaboration with Biogen.

Shares of Sage Therapeutics  (SAGE)  advanced on Wednesday after the biopharmaceutical company swung to a fourth-quarter profit.

Shares of the Cambridge, Mass., company at last check rose 6.6% to $85.51.

Sage Therapeutics posted earnings of $18.19 a share, compared with a loss of $3.25 a share in the year-ago period. 

Total revenue for the latest quarter was $1.11 billion, buoyed by collaboration revenue from its collaboration with Biogen.  (BIIB)  Product revenue was $1.7 million versus $2 million a year earlier.

A survey of analysts by FactSet produced consensus estimates of a GAAP loss of $2.03 a share, or an adjusted loss of $1.89 a share, on revenue of $1.9 million.

In November 2020 Sage and Biogen entered a deal, potentially valued at $3.1 billion, to develop and commercialize zuranolone for depression disorders and Sage-324 for essential tremors and other disorders.

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As part of the deal, Biogen bought 6.2 million shares of Sage at a 40% premium.

The companies are jointly developing the drugs in the U.S. If that effort succeeds, they will jointly commercialize the drugs in the U.S. 

Their agreement gives Sage exclusive license to develop and sell the drugs outside the U.S., excluding rights to zuranolone in Japan, Taiwan and South Korea.

“Our collaboration with Biogen enhances our strategic, financial, and operational flexibility, enabling our plans to expand and accelerate our pipeline and extending the potential impact of our product candidates, if we’re successful, to more than 450 million patients worldwide,” Sage Chief Executive Barry Greene said in a statement.

Sage Therapeutics ended 2020 with cash, equivalents, restricted cash and marketable securities of $2.1 billion. The company expects that figure to exceed $1.7 billion at the end of 2021. 

Last April Sage completed a restructuring intended to enable the company to advance its strategy and pipeline throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.