Akorn (NASDAQ: AKRX) and BioLife Solutions (NASDAQ:BLFS) are both medical companies, but which is the better stock? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their profitabiliy, valuation, earnings, dividends, risk, analyst recommendations and institutional ownership.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of recent recommendations and price targets for Akorn and BioLife Solutions, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Akorn 2 8 1 0 1.91
BioLife Solutions 0 0 2 0 3.00

Akorn presently has a consensus target price of $29.13, suggesting a potential downside of 12.98%. BioLife Solutions has a consensus target price of $5.00, suggesting a potential upside of 33.33%. Given BioLife Solutions’ stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe BioLife Solutions is more favorable than Akorn.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Akorn and BioLife Solutions’ gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Akorn $1.02 billion 4.10 $372.04 million $1.48 22.61
BioLife Solutions $8.74 million 5.59 -$3.46 million ($0.52) -7.21

Akorn has higher revenue and earnings than BioLife Solutions. BioLife Solutions is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Akorn, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

74.7% of Akorn shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 2.1% of BioLife Solutions shares are held by institutional investors. 28.2% of Akorn shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 37.7% of BioLife Solutions shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, hedge funds and endowments believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Profitability

This table compares Akorn and BioLife Solutions’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Akorn 12.15% 21.31% 9.06%
BioLife Solutions -74.58% -74.36% -39.48%

Volatility & Risk

Akorn has a beta of 1.36, indicating that its share price is 36% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, BioLife Solutions has a beta of -0.82, indicating that its share price is 182% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Summary

Akorn beats BioLife Solutions on 8 of the 13 factors compared between the two stocks.

Akorn Company Profile

Akorn Inc. (Akorn), together with its subsidiaries, is a specialty generic pharmaceutical company that develops, manufactures and markets generic and branded prescription pharmaceuticals, as well as private-label over-the-counter (OTC) consumer health products and animal health pharmaceuticals. The Company operates through two segments: Prescription Pharmaceuticals and the Consumer Health. The Prescription Pharmaceuticals segment consists of generic and branded prescription pharmaceuticals in a range of dosage forms, including sterile ophthalmics, injectables and inhalants and non-sterile oral liquids, topicals and nasal sprays and otics. The Consumer Health segment consists of branded and private-label OTC products and animal health products dispensed by veterinary professionals. Its branded and private-label OTC products are focused on ophthalmics, including a dry eye treatment TheraTears Therapy for Your Eyes.

BioLife Solutions Company Profile

BioLife Solutions, Inc. (BioLife) is engaged in the developing, manufacturing and marketing a portfolio of biopreservation tools and services for cells, tissues and organs, including clinical grade cell and tissue hypothermic storage and cryopreservation freeze media and a related cloud hosted biologistics cold chain management application for shippers. The Company’s product offerings include hypothermic storage and cryopreservation freeze media products for cells, tissues, and organs; generic blood stem cell freezing and cell thawing media products; custom product formulation and custom packaging services; cold chain logistics services incorporating precision thermal packaging products and cloud-hosted Web applications, and contract aseptic manufacturing formulation, fill and finish services of liquid media products. Its products include HypoThermosol FRS, CryoStor, BloodStor, Cell Thawing Media, PrepaStor and biologistex cold-chain management service.

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