Shares of bioprocessing technology company Repligen (RGEN -3.02%) soared 12.9% in October according to data provided by S&P Global Market Intelligence. The move comes in a remarkable year for the company as its stock has more than doubled so far in 2020.
The reason? Simply put, the COVID-19 pandemic has added more fire to an already hot market. Repligen is a small player in a bioprocessing market dominated by far larger companies such as Danaher (DHR -0.65%), MilliporeSigma, and Thermo Fisher. Nevertheless, Repligen is a leader in niche markets such as pre-packed chromatography and filtration, making it a great growth stock for in-the-know investors.
Bioprocessing is the process whereby biological catalysts are used to produce a chemical or a pharmaceutical within a closed manufactured environment. That makes it a key part of the battle to develop vaccines and therapies for COVID-19. Given this, it's not hard to see why the sector has been so hot this year. Indeed, COVID-19 related programs are expected to account for around 10% of Repligen's revenue in 2020.
The coronavirus pandemic has obviously boosted demand and Repligen recently upgraded its full-year revenue guidance to a range of $348 million to $352 million compared to previous guidance for $332 million to $340 million, with organic growth coming in at 23% to 24%.
It's a similar story at Danaher, where its life sciences revenue rose a whopping 35% in the third quarter, and the purchase of General Electric's biopharma business early in the year is looking like a great deal for investors.
With non-COVID-19-related academic and research labs opening up as the year progresses it's possible that Repligen could receive another boost to growth in the coming months. That would be even more good news for a company already benefiting from pandemic-related research. Looking ahead, investors will be hoping that Repligen, and the other bioprocessing technology vendors, will see a long-term benefit from the funding of disease-related research.