BioSpecifics surges on international breakout

BioSpecifics Technologies Corp. President Thomas Wegman.

A high-flying international performance by its flagship product Xiaflex marked a big year for Lynbrook pharma firm BioSpecifics Technologies Corp.

The biopharmaceutical company reported its fourth-quarter and full-year 2015 financials Monday, highlighted by a 62 percent jump in annual revenues and a 107 percent leap in after-tax income. The strong earnings capped “an important year of commercial growth,” according to BioSpecifics President Thomas Wegman.

Wegman credited the boastful bottom line primarily to new international pipelines for Xiaflex, a first-in-class collagenase-based treatment for Peyronie’s disease, a condition in which collagen causes the penis to curve during an erection, making sexual intercourse difficult or, in advanced cases, impossible.

For the year ended Dec. 31, BioSpecifics reported net income of $9.6 million, or $1.41 per share ($1.32 per diluted share), up from net income of $4.6 million, or 72 cents per share (66 cents) for the 2014 fiscal year.

For the fourth quarter, also ended Dec. 31, the company reported net income of $2.7 million, or 38 cents per share (36 cents per diluted share). That’s up from $1.9 million, or 29 cents/27 cents, reported in 4Q 2014.

Revenues climbed handsomely also. For the full year, BioSpecifics reported total revenues of $22.8 million, up from $14 million reported in 2014; for the fourth quarter, the company reported total revenues of $6.1 million, up from $4.6 million in 4Q 2014.

BioSpecifics also noted a slight decrease in research-and-development expenses – $1 million for the year, down from $1.3 million in 2014 – and a moderate climb in general and administrative expenses. Year-over-year, general and administrative expenses rose from $5.8 million to $7.3 million.

Despite that increase, BioSpecifics reported cash, cash equivalents and investments of $37.1 million, a heathy hike from the $22 million reported on Dec. 31, 2014.

Wegman also reported research initiatives that include a Phase 2 trial on a cellulite treatment and human trials focused on uterine fibroids – benign tumors in the uterus – scheduled for the second half of the year. BioSpecifics should also start receiving data this spring from a current Phase 2 human lipoma trial.

BioSpecifics, which boasts a $300 million-plus market cap, launched 59 years ago among the nation’s first batch of biotech startups and went public in 1991. Newsday ranked it Long Island’s No. 1 performing pubic company of 2014.