It's been quite a gap since my last seminar, over the summer, and I've missed meeting some directors in the flesh. Fortunately this Autumnal get-together gave me the opportunity to meet "something old, something new, something with borrowings and something that investors hope will turn blue". Ahem, on with the report.

Bioventix (BVXP)

I last saw Peter Harrison, CEO of Bioventix, present 18 months ago at a Sharesoc Seminar. Needless to say the story is broadly unchanged although Peter added some additional colour tonight. It turns out that they sell just 10g of physical antibody (which dilutes down to ~5 litres) per annum and this brings in £2m of sales. The rest of their income, about £6m, comes from downstream royalty payments (where this is set at 2% of the reagent pack price). The USP for Bioventix is that their sheep monoclonal antibodies (SMAs) can advantage downstream customers and that once a customer has gone through the regulatory process they are very reluctant to repeat the process. As an example Siemens are currently rolling out their new troponin test, which is much more sensitive than existing tests, and have received US approval. While this has taken longer than expected, with sales thus coming in lower than expected, there is no doubt that this test will deliver substantial royalties in the future.

Talking about the future a characteristic of Bioventix is that they work on long timescales. The antibodies which are making money now were developed over the last decade and the ones which they're exploring now won't pay out until 2025-35 (if at all). This means that revenue is rather predictable but equally there aren't going to be earnings surprises to the upside. Right now their new amyloid test looks exciting, and important, but there's lots of science to be done first with research to revenue typically taking 5 years. There are also a bunch of other antibodies in the pipeline, ranging from high-value high-risk tests (e.g. Cardiac MyC) to low-value low-risk (e.g. contract cancer test), and I get the sense that the team is open to opportunity. An example of this is Biotin as this is both used in tests and taken as an oral supplement - the result being that a supplement user can get a false zero reading and then be incorrectly sent home! If Bioventix can add value here then that would be decent…

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