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Sleepy Sector Wakes Up - Billionaires Hold Biotechs in 52-week Low

September 03, 2013 | About:
Sally Jones

Sally Jones

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The biotech industry refers to 2013 as the year of the biotech return. Fourteen biotech companies had gone public as of May 2013, according to Reuters. By early August BioTechNow reported, “With 23 US-based biotech companies in 2013, the sector is now ahead of any year since 2007. The European-based biotechs (including companies based in Israel) continue to knock out a few IPOs per year, with four in 2013 so far.”

Here’s a look at four biotech companies in a 52-week low, and the billionaires and insiders who hold them. The four companies selected are more than 74% off a 52-week high.



Industry Sector: Biotechnology

According to the GuruFocus Value Screen for finding 52-Week Lows, the biotechnology sector has 24 companies out of 173 on a 52-week low. The low ratio is 0.14.

Sophiris Bio Inc. (SPHS)

The current share price is $4.22, or 86.1% off the 52-week high of $30.32.

Up 2,339% over 12 months, Sophiris Bio Inc. has a market cap of $68 million, and trades with a P/S of 2.90.

Company: Sophiris a biopharmaceutical company developing a clinical-stage, targeted treatment for the symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH or enlarged prostate). The company has achieved more than 20 drug approvals. As of August 23, 2013, Sophiris Bio Inc. issued 13,000,000 common shares at a price of $5.00 per share for aggregate gross proceeds of $65 million in an IPO.

Guru Action: There is no guru action to report but company executives were actively buying shares in August 2013. Here’s insider trading for SPHS. Boxer Capital LLC, a ten percent owner, bought 1,600,000 shares as of August 16, 2013 at a trade price of $5.00 per share

Track share pricing, revenue and net income:

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AVEO Pharmaceuticals Inc. (AVEO)

The current share price is $2.12, or 81.50% off the 52-week high of $11.45.

Down 79% over 12 months, AVEO Pharmaceuticals Inc. has a market cap of $110.1 million, and trades with a P/B of 0.80.

Company: AVEO Pharmaceuticals Inc. is a cancer therapeutics company committed to discovering, developing and commercializing targeted cancer therapies. The company is seeking to develop multiple new drugs that target important mechanisms known or believed to be involved in cancer. AVEO Pharmaceuticals Inc. was incorporated in 2001 as GenPath Pharmaceuticals Inc. and changed its name to AVEO Pharmaceuticals Inc. in 2005.

Guru Action: As of June 30, 2013, the top Guru stakeholder is Seth Klarman who reduced his position by 21.9%. He currently holds 3,829,350 shares or 7.39% of shares outstanding. In seven quarters of holding, Klarman has averaged a loss of 86% on 5,084,652 shares bought at an average price of $15.43 per share. He has averaged a loss of 55% on 1,255,302 shares sold at an average price of $4.73 per share.

Guru Jim Simons increased his position by 298.98% as of June 30, 2013, buying 912,245 shares at an average price of $4.52 for a loss of 50.4%. He has averaged a loss of 5*% on 1,217,363 shares bought at an average price of $5.08 per share.

Chuck Royce and Paul Tudor Jones both made new buys as of the same quarter, holding 540,000 and 111,300 shares, respectively.

Track share pricing:

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Oxigene Inc. (OXGN)

The current share price is $2.20, or 76.8% off the 52-week high of $9.48.

Down 66% over 12 months, Oxigene Inc. has a market cap of $5.8 million, and trades with a P/B of 1.00.

Company: OxiGene Inc. was first incorporated in 1988. OxiGene is a clinical-stage, biopharmaceutical company developing novel therapeutics to treat cancer and eye diseases.

Guru Action: As of June 30, 2013, the only Guru stakeholder is Jim Simons who made a new buy of 17,585 shares at an average price of $3.29 for a loss of 33.1%. Simons has sold out twice in his five-year trading history showing a streak of double-digit losses at around 99% in each quarter. Insider trading was active for OXGN.

Track share pricing:

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Medgenics Inc. (MDGN)

The current share price is $4.17, or 74.6% off the 52-week high of $16.43.

Down 64% over 12 months, Medgenics Inc. has a market cap of $51.1 million, and trades with a P/B of 16.00.

Company: Medgenics Inc. and its subsidiary are engaged in the research and development of products in the field of biotechnology and associated medical equipment. Company operations are conducted in Israel.

Guru Action: As of June 30, 2013, the only Guru owner is Jim Simons who reduced his position by 41.83%, unloading 11,000 shares at an average price of $4.10 for a gain of 1.7%.

Jim Simons has averaged a loss of 28% on 26,300 shares at an average price of $5.81. On shares sold, he has averaged a gain of 2% on 11,000 shares sold at an average price of $4.10 per share.

Track share pricing:

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GuruFocus Real Time Picks reports the stock purchases and sales that Gurus have made within the prior 2 weeks. The report time lag can be as short as 2 days after the date of the transaction. This feature is for Premium Members only.

Check out the GuruFocus special feature 52-week low screener to find the stocks hitting new lows but are still held by top investor Gurus and Insiders.

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About the author:

Sally Jones
Sally Jones writes about Real Time Picks. She says, "I truly enjoy watching the Gurus in realtime and telling their story."

Rating: 2.3/5 (6 votes)

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