Earlier this month, medical and nanotech software specialist Accelrys (Nasdaq: ACCL ) reported that its quarterly revenue had decreased 1%, from the previous quarter, to $20.2 million. Although the dollar amount is up 4% from a year ago, the poorer-than-expected result has essentially flatlined the stock, which is trading for about $6.20 a share.
Investors shouldn't get too bent out of shape about the rather stale results -- which management blamed on currency fluctuations -- and should instead view it as a buying opportunity. That's because the revenue news was followed by another piece of information that I believe will ultimately have a more significant impact on its stock.
Last Thursday, management announced that it had released the most recent version of its life science model and simulation tool, Discovery Studio 1.6. The software modeling system, which I have written about in the past, is being used by such companies as AstraZeneca (NYSE: AZN ) , Eli Lilly (NYSE: LLY ) , and Amgen (Nasdaq: AMGN ) .
What excites me about the upgrade, though, is that many others in the life-sciences sector can use it to provide them with further guidance about how to design new diagnostics and drugs. Specifically, the software can be used to design new and improved diagnostic nanoparticles, as well as find new nanomaterials that can more successfully deliver drug payloads to their intended target.
The new software, which can now incorporate a company's proprietary data, is reported to be quicker at establishing what drugs and nanomaterials will work in the body. Furthermore, by identifying new nanoparticles that adhere to only specific biomolecules, it can also be helpful in monitoring the effect various drug treatments have on different diseases. Both applications have the potential to save the pharmaceutical industry a lot of time and money.
For the past year, Accelrys has been developing its nanotechnology consortium -- an alliance intended to accelerate the development of nanotech software tools. This latest upgrade suggests that the company is making good on its promise to use the consortium as a feedback mechanism to allow its programmers to make the improvements that customers are requesting.
This should help its software remain competitive, which, in turn, should hopefully allow the company's investors to see higher revenues in the quarters ahead.
If they don't, Accelrys won't need software to model which way the stock will head next.
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Eli Lilly is anIncome Investorrecommendation.
Fool contributor Jack Uldrich is the author of two books on nanotechnology, including Investing in Nanotechnology: Think Small, Win Big. He owns stock in Accelrys. The Fool has a strict disclosure policy.