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Cesca Therapeutics reports wider net loss for FY18 as sales fall

Cesca Therapeutics (KOOL) Monday reported a wider net loss for fiscal 2018 when revenues of the biotechnology firm declined sharply. The company’s stock dropped during the extended trading session Monday after closing the regular session lower.

Net loss widened sharply to $39.7 million or $2.16 per share last year from $5.5 million or $0.55 per share in 2017.

Net revenues of the Rancho Cordova, California-based company dropped 24% annually to $9.67 million during the year. An increase in the sales of CAR-TXpress was partially offset by lower sales of BioArchive devices and changes in a royalty payment agreement.

An increase in the sales of CAR-TXpress was partially offset by lower sales of BioArchive devices and changes in a royalty payment agreement

Research and development expenses dropped 11% from the prior year to $3 million, mainly due to a decline in personnel costs pursuant to the reorganization carried out last year.

“Our progress during the fourth quarter and early part of 2019 in our device division has been significant and showcases the momentum we have for ThermoGenesis’ mission to advance a full suite of cellular processing solutions that can address a range of clinical biobanking automation needs and the emerging CAR-T immunotherapy market,” said CEO Chris Xu.

Also see: Biogen ends Alzheimer’s Phase 3 trials

During the fourth quarter of 2018, ThermoGenesis, Cesca’s device division, received FDA approval for its proprietary AutoXpress Platform for clinical blood banking. In addition, a device master file was submitted to the FDA for the X-LAB automated cell processing device, which is an important component of the CAR-TXpres platform.

Cesca shares closed Monday’s regular trading lower and lost further during the extended session. The stock has lost about 85% over the past twelve months.

 

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New setback for Boeing as Airbus wins massive Chinese order

Days after Chinese aviation firms grounded Boeing (BA) planes following the deadly crash, rival aircraft maker Airbus this week won a multibillion-dollar contract from the Asian country. China being its biggest market, the latest development is definitely bad news for Boeing.

The $35-billion contract – for 290 A320-series and 10 A350 planes that compete with Boeing’s 737 MAX – was signed when Chinese president Xi Jinping visited Paris. The order has been pending since the heads of the two countries first agreed on it during a meeting more than a year ago, though on a smaller scale at that time.

The shift in market share comes at a time when Boeing is already facing headwinds from the ongoing trade war between Washington and Beijing. In the wake of the recent crashes involving Boeing aircraft, in Indonesia and Ethiopia, the odds of China switching to Airbus are very high. Realizing its bright prospects in the Asian market, Airbus is reportedly preparing to expand capacity at the Tianjin production facility.

The shift in market share comes at a time when Boeing is already facing headwinds from the ongoing trade war

The new order comes as a boost to Airbus which had a lackluster start to the year, registering historically low deliveries in the first two months. China has been witnessing a spurt in air travel due to the improvement in the spending power of its middle-class population.

The troubles of Boeing are unlikely to end in the near future as it faces the Herculean task of fixing the snags and proving to the world that the 737 MAX planes are airworthy. Meanwhile, the chief executive officer of Ethiopian Airlines, which operated the ill-fated Boeing plane, said Monday that the companies will continue their business partnership despite the recent tragedy. The comments of Gebremariam come even as Boeing is taking steps to fix the software system that could have caused the accident.

Boeing shares are yet to recover from the massive fall that followed the grounding of its aircraft across the world earlier this month. In January, the stock had climbed to an all-time high after slipping to a one-year low a month earlier.

 

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