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Exagen Q4 2021 Revenues Flat as Sales of Avise Tests Rise

NEW YORK — Exagen reported after the close of the market on Tuesday that its fourth quarter revenues were flat year over year, although testing revenue increased 14 percent.

For the three-month period ended Dec. 31, 2021, Exagen's revenues were $12.7 million, the same as in Q4 2020.

The company delivered 34,147 of its Avise CTD tests, including its Avise Lupus test, in the fourth quarter, and 128,246 tests for the entire year. In the fourth quarter, revenues from Avise tests were $10.4 million, up 21 percent from the previous year's fourth quarter. Revenues from the firm's copromotion agreement for Simponi (golimumab) with Janssen Biotech were $200,000.

Exagen posted a fourth quarter net loss of $7.1 million, or $.42 per share, versus a net loss of $3.5 million, or $.27 per share, in the year-ago quarter. Analysts' average estimate was for a loss per share of $.50.

The San Diego-based company's R&D spending grew 83 percent to $2.2 million in Q4 2021 from $1.2 million a year ago, while its SG&A costs grew 19 percent to $11.8 million from $9.9 million a year ago.

Brian Weinstein, an analyst from investment bank William Blair, wrote in a note that the fourth quarter results "illustrate continued execution on multiple fronts, including commercial success, payor progress, and pipeline execution," despite "difficult pandemic headwinds that significantly affected the start to 2022."

Exagen's full-year 2021 revenues increased 15 percent year over year to $48.3 million from $42.0 million. Testing revenues were $47.1 million, a 28 percent increase compared to 2020. Revenues from the Janssen agreement were $1.2 million for the year.

Exagen reported a full-year 2021 net loss of $26.9 million, or $1.68 per share, compared with a net loss of $16.7 million, or $1.32 per share, the year before.

Its R&D expenses for 2021 doubled year over year to $7.2 million from $3.6 million, and its SG&A costs rose 20 percent to $44.5 million from $37.0 million.

At the end of 2021, Exagen had cash and cash equivalents totaling $99.4 million.

In its 10-K filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, Exagen disclosed that it had received a subpoena from the Department of Justice last month related to potential federal regulatory healthcare offenses. The firm said it is cooperating with the subpoena.

Exagen said it expects revenue for full-year 2022 to be in the range of $51 million to $53 million.

Also on Tuesday, the firm announced that its Avise tests would be covered as in-network benefits with Centene, including its subsidiary WellCare Health Plans, for 22.7 million people. The coverage will go into effect June 1.

Canaccord Genuity's Kyle Mikson said in a note to investors that the Centene coverage "could indicate that the company is gaining momentum with large [payors]." He added that it could signal additional payor agreements in 2022 and 2023.