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VIVUS' Q4 Loss Shrinks 70% as Licensing Revenue Soars

Fat-fighting biopharmaceutical company VIVUS (NASDAQ: VVUS  ) may not have knocked investors' socks off with the release of its fourth-quarter earnings results after the bell this evening, but definite progress was made when it comes to reducing losses.

For the quarter, VIVUS reported total revenue of $44.1 million, a 21-fold increase from the $2 million it reported in the year-ago quarter. The bulk of this difference came from $34.8 million in recognized licensing revenue from Auxilium Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: AUXL.DL  ) and Sanofi (NYSE: SNY  ) for Stendra (marketed in the European Union as Spedra), a treatment for erectile dysfunction.

The remaining $9.2 million in revenue came from product sales, including $7.7 million from chronic weight management drug Qsymia, and $1.5 million from Stendra and Spedra. By comparison, VIVUS recognized just shy of $2 million in Qsymia sales during the fourth quarter of 2012. VIVUS noted that Qsymia prescriptions grew by 12% over the sequential third quarter to approximately 124,000 prescriptions written, and that the holidays negatively affected the number of scripts written by physicians.

Net loss, meanwhile, shrank an incredible 70% to just $17.2 million, or $0.17 per share, for the quarter, from $56.7 million, or $0.56 per share, in the year-ago period. This was primarily accomplished through the aforementioned higher licensing revenue which helped offset expenses, as well as a $13.7 million decline in selling, general, and administrative expenses and a 36% reduction in research and development expenses to $5 million.

Since VIVUS is still losing money, cash burn is an incredibly important factor for investors to monitor. VIVUS ended its fiscal year with $343.3 million in cash and securities, compared to $214.6 million at the end of its last fiscal year. The huge increase was attributed to cash provided by financing activities, as well as up-front licensing payments.

VIVUS made no mention of a forward revenue, profit/loss, or cash burn forecast in its report. 

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Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On February 25, 2014, at 5:36 AM, marp11 wrote:

    wow incredible


    now pay the debt off... only 300 MILLION

  • Report this Comment On February 25, 2014, at 5:37 AM, marp11 wrote:




  • Report this Comment On February 25, 2014, at 7:01 AM, gazoo99 wrote:

    You forgot the "BIG" picture in the Press Release.

    Let me help you with that:

    Year End 2013 Financial Results

    For the year ended December 31, 2013, total net product revenue was $25.2 million, of which $23.7 million was from sales of Qsymia and the remaining amount was from STENDRA. Total license revenue was $55.8 million from the license and commercialization agreements for STENDRA and SPEDRA.

    For the year ended December 31, 2013, net loss was $174.5 million, or $1.72 net loss per share, as compared to a net loss of $139.9 million, or $1.42 net loss per share, for the year ended December 31, 2012. The increase in net loss was primarily attributable to higher selling, general and administrative expenses related to commercialization activities for Qsymia. Included in the net loss for the year ended December 31, 2013 was $32.7 million in non-recurring charges related to the proxy contest in connection with our 2013 Annual Meeting of Stockholders and associated severance charges, including $14.1 million of non-cash share-based compensation expense, a total charge of $10.2 million for Qsymia inventories on hand in excess of demand, plus a purchase commitment fee for Qsymia, and $20.2 million of net interest and other expense primarily related to the long-term debt incurred in April and May of 2013.

  • Report this Comment On February 25, 2014, at 8:03 AM, marp11 wrote:

    VVUS Downgraded across the board

    JPMorgan downgraded $15 to $8

    Jefferies downgraded $5 to $2

    Bank of America downgraded $11 to $6

    Credit Suisse downgraded from $10 to $7


    arna 50

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Sean Williams

A Fool since 2010, and a graduate from UC San Diego with a B.A. in Economics, Sean specializes in the healthcare sector and in investment planning topics. You'll usually find him writing about Obamacare, marijuana, developing drugs, diagnostics, and medical devices, Social Security, taxes, or any number of other macroeconomic issues.

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