Twist Bioscience (TWST 1.25%) ended 2021 as a big loser -- down by more than 40% for the year. But don't write off this biotech company -- its long-term prospects are impressive. In this Motley Fool Live video recorded on Dec. 15, 2021, Motley Fool contributors Keith Speights and Brian Orelli discuss why Twist Bioscience's stock could be a 10-bagger.
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Keith Speights: Jay says: "I seem to remember one of you mentioned possibly doing a deeper dive into Twist Bioscience earlier in the year." That ticker there, by the way, is T-W-S-T. "Did you end up doing one? Seems like a really interesting company." Brian, I think we did do the deeper dive, but let's talk about Twist Bioscience.
Brian Orelli: So, the company has a way to make DNA cheaper than anybody else has been able to do, and that allows them to make DNA for companies to do research, to synthesize a whole gene so they can make the corresponding protein. They can also make libraries with them, and so they've helped drug companies develop antibody libraries to screen and then pick out ones that are specific to the protein that they're trying to unblock.
Then, the big thing that they're trying to do is to use DNA to store data. So you can change the data into a four-digit code, which DNA is, and then just write the DNA. Then you can put it on a chip basically for long-term storage, and then if you ever actually need to go back and read that data, then you can just go sequence the DNA, and that will allow you to bring the data back. This could be a way to cheaply store large amounts of data that isn't needed very often.
That's the pie-in-the-sky idea, and they seem to have some initial data that shows that it could work. They've got a beta project going with one or more companies that want to try to store their data that way.
Speights: Brian, Twist Bioscience's market cap right now is around $4.2 billion. Based on where the company is right now, that would be an expensive market cap. But if it has success in some of the areas that's working on, particularly storing data in DNA, this company could be a 10-bagger do you think, over the long term?
Orelli: Yeah. I think that's completely reasonable. I've been looking to grab some more shares as it's dropped this year. I'm a shareholder right now, but I would like to add to my position just a little bit. In theory, you probably don't need very much. I mean, it's definitely a risky play. But if it works, I think it's got a huge amount of upside potential.