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Guardant Health Q2 Revenues Rise 23 Percent

NEW YORK – Guardant Health reported after the close of the market on Thursday that its second quarter 2020 revenues were up 23 percent year over year.

The liquid biopsy and cancer early detection firm reported total revenues of $66.3 million for the quarter ended June 30 compared to $54.0 million in the same period of 2019, beating the $59.2 million that Wall Street had predicted on average.

Guardant's oncology testing revenue rose 21 percent to $51 million from $42.1 million in the prior year's quarter, the firm said. Development services revenue of $15.3 million was up 29 percent million from the $11.9 million the firm saw in Q2 2019.

The company reported 13,694 tests to clinical customers and 2,805 tests to biopharmaceutical customers during the quarter, representing an increase of 15 percent and a decrease of 47 percent respectively, over the second quarter of 2019.

In a call discussing the company's financial results, Guardant cofounder and CEO Helmy Eltoukhy said the company's US clinical volumes had been down about 30 percent exiting the first quarter and going into early April compared to where they were on average during the first 10 weeks of the year. But by early May the firm had begun to see a "slight uptick" in sample volume and has continued to see improvement in clinical volumes throughout May and into June.

"We are pleased to report that we exited the quarter with a volume similar to the levels we saw in mid-March prior to the impacts from COVID-19," he said.

Diving deeper into clinical volumes, Eltoukhy said that Guardant's testing has recovered more quickly in community hospitals compared to the academic setting.

Finally, although the firm's biopharma volumes declined 47 percent year over year, Eltoukhy argued that his was "counterbalanced" by the 29 percent year-over-year growth in Guardant's development services revenue.

"On the whole we remain pleased with our biopharmaceutical business," he added.

Among recent highlights for Guardant was an underwritten public offering that raised $354.6 million in net proceeds during Q2. On the call, Eltoukhy reiterated that the money raised will help accelerate development of the firm's LUNAR program, which is advancing technology for early detection and early-stage cancer monitoring.

"Looking ahead, we continue to believe that the unique opportunity we have here ... will allow us to serve patients well beyond those in advanced stages of the disease," he said.

More recently, the company also announced two strategic companion diagnostic collaborations: one to develop the Guardant360 assay as a companion to Janssen Biotech’s amivantamab in non-small-cell lung carcinoma, and another expanding to a new indication for Radius Health’s elacestrant in breast cancer.

Guardant's net loss attributable to its common shareholders for the quarter was $54.6 million, or $0.57 per share, compared to a net loss attributable to its common shareholders of $11.6 million, or $.13 per share, in Q2 2019. It fell short of the consensus Wall Street estimate of a loss per share of $.38.

The company's R&D expenses rose 86 percent to $36.3 million from $19.5 million in Q2 2020. Its SG&A expenses jumped nearly 90 percent to $62.2 million from $32.8 million.

As of June 30, 2019, Guardant had $164.7 million in cash and cash equivalents and $773.2 million in short-term marketable securities.