While companies that promise triple-digit sales growth are rare, they do exist. In fact, market watchers currently believe that ACADIA Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ACAD), NovoCure Ltd (NASDAQ:NVCR), and Intercept Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ICPT) will all pull off that feat in the coming year. Does that mean that you should buy these stocks right now? Read on to learn more about these three businesses so you can make an informed decision for yourself.
A market all to itself
The first stock on today's list is ACADIA Pharmaceuticals. With the launch of its first drug, Nuplazid, the company recently transitioned from a clinical-stage biopharma to a commercial-stage. Nuplazid is the only FDA-approved treatment for Parkinson's disease psychosis, or PDP, a condition that causes delusions and hallucinations. It is estimated that PDP occurs in about 40% of patients who suffer from Parkinson's disease, which puts the drug's addressable-market opportunity at roughly 400,000 patients in the U.S. alone.
Since Nuplazid is the first approved drug to treat this condition, ACADIA currently has this market all to itself. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the drug is off to a terrific start. Sales during its first full quarter on the market came in at over $5 million, a result far ahead of what Wall Street had anticipated. Sales are expected to nearly double in the upcoming quarter, which is why market watchers are projecting full-year sales in 2016 to come in around $14 million.
That's all great, but analysts believe that the company's growth engine will really start to kick in during 2017 as insurers and providers grow more comfortable with the drug. Current estimates call for revenue of more than $85 million in 2017, which would represent better than 500% growth year over year. That's a figure that should grab any growth investor's attention.
The future of cancer treatment is here
Cancer is one of the leading causes of death in the developed world, and providers have used chemotherapy for years as a way to fight the disease. However, chemotherapy often causes nasty side effects that can be a deterrent for prospective patients.
NovoCure is an innovating medical-device company that's attempting to change all that. The company created a device that it calls the Optune system, which is worn on the skin. The Optune system emits low-intensity electrical fields that disrupt cell division in cancerous cells, providing patients with a far less invasive treatment option.
The Optune system is currently approved by the FDA to treat only glioblastoma, a form of brain cancer, but that hasn't prevented sales from growing quickly. Wall Street currently believes that sales will exceed $168 million in 2017, which is more than double the $80 million in sales that is expected to be reported for 2016.
While those are lofty expectations, the company has had no problem growing by triple-digit rates in the past. If the company can successfully execute on growth forecasts, then its stock could likely follow suit.
Growth is on the horizon
The final stock on today's list is Intercept Pharmaceuticals, which is another biopharma that offers investors massive growth prospects in the year ahead. The company's only FDA-approved drug is called Ocaliva and is used to treat primary biliary cholangitis, or PBC, a chronic liver disease.
Just like ACADIA, Intercept is off to a good start with its launch of Ocaliva as total sales in 2016 are projected to be around $20 million. However, that number is expected to take a giant leap forward in 2017, with analysts forecasting full-year sales to nearly quadruple to $96 million. Even then there could be plenty of room for growth as peak sales for Ocaliva in PBC are estimated to be about $300 million.
Those figures are exciting, but the real bull case for buying Intercept's stock lies in Ocaliva's long-term potential. Management is currently studying Ocaliva as a promising treatment for nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, or NASH, which is a far bigger indication that PBC. Estimates show that roughly between 3% and 12% of American adults have NASH, which if left untreated can lead to scarring of the liver and even cirrhosis. If Intercept can go on to win approval for NASH, then Ocaliva's peak sales figures could easily cross the multibillion-dollar mark. That makes Intercept a great stock for growth investors to get to know.
Brian Feroldi has no position in any stocks mentioned. Like this article? Follow him on Twitter, where he goes by the handle @BrianFeroldi, or connect with him on LinkedIn to see more articles like this.
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