NPS Swings To Net Loss On Lower Revenue

Reduced product sales and lower milestones and license fees dragged down the pharmaceutical company's revenue in the fourth quarter.
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On March 13, 2009,

NPS Pharmaceuticals


swung to a net loss in Q4 FY08 on lower revenue and the absence of a year earlier gain on sale of assets. The results were also negatively impacted by non-operating charges of $6.20 million related to declines in the estimated fair value of auction-rate security investments. Net loss amounted to $8.48 million or $0.18 per share compared to a profit of $17.58 million or $0.32 per share in the previous year's quarter. The most recent consensus estimate was a loss of $0.10 per share.

Revenue during Q4 FY08 decreased 29.2% to $24.07 million from $33.98 million in the prior year's quarter, as higher revenue from royalties was countered by reduced product sales and lower milestones and license fees. Royalty revenue jumped 30.0% to $18.32 million, benefitting from higher royalties on Amgen's sales of Sensipar and Nycomed's sales of Preotact, as well as royalties of $0.70 million recognized on Kyowa Kirin's sales of Regpara. On the other hand, milestones and license fees plunged 80.1% to $2.88 million, and product sales dropped 46.8% to $2.86 million. Research and development costs were down 52.3% to $4.84 million due to the discontinuation of certain research and development activities.

Revenue for FY08 grew 18.6% to $102.28 million from 86.25 million, reflecting higher revenue from royalties and milestones and license fees, partly offset by a decline in product sales. Net loss for the full year widened to $31.73 million or $0.67 per share from $4.28 million or $0.09 per share, hurt by higher interest expense and loss on marketable investment securities.

Looking ahead, NPS Pharmaceuticals expects a higher cash burn during FY09 compared to FY08 due to the costs related to its Phase III development programs for GATTEX in short bowel syndrome and NPSP558 in hypoparathyroidism. NPSP expects cash burn to be in the range of $55.00 million to $65.00 million.