Sophiris Bio (NASDAQ: SPHS) and Neuralstem (NASDAQ:CUR) are both small-cap medical companies, but which is the better stock? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, profitability, earnings, dividends, valuation, risk and institutional ownership.

Risk & Volatility

Sophiris Bio has a beta of 1.48, indicating that its share price is 48% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Neuralstem has a beta of 1.6, indicating that its share price is 60% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and target prices for Sophiris Bio and Neuralstem, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Sophiris Bio 0 0 4 0 3.00
Neuralstem 0 0 0 0 N/A

Sophiris Bio presently has a consensus target price of $6.25, suggesting a potential upside of 203.40%. Neuralstem has a consensus target price of $3.18, suggesting a potential upside of 211.76%. Given Neuralstem’s higher probable upside, analysts clearly believe Neuralstem is more favorable than Sophiris Bio.

Profitability

This table compares Sophiris Bio and Neuralstem’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Sophiris Bio N/A -85.20% -38.89%
Neuralstem -161,327.27% -148.90% -84.82%

Institutional and Insider Ownership

5.8% of Sophiris Bio shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 7.2% of Neuralstem shares are held by institutional investors. 3.9% of Sophiris Bio shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 15.4% of Neuralstem shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, hedge funds and endowments believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Sophiris Bio and Neuralstem’s revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio NetIncome Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Sophiris Bio N/A N/A -$11.16 million ($0.18) -11.44
Neuralstem $20,000.00 772.65 -$21.07 million N/A N/A

Sophiris Bio has higher revenue, but lower earnings than Neuralstem.

About Sophiris Bio

Sophiris Bio, Inc., formerly Protox Therapeutics Inc., is a Canada-based biopharmaceutical company focused on the research, development and commercialization of products for the treatment of urological diseases. The Company has operations based in San Diego developing a treatment for benign prostatic hyperplasia (benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) or enlarged prostate). The Company has partnered with Kissei Pharmaceuticals for the development and commercialization of PRX302 in Japan. Sophiris Bio, Inc. is advancing a pipeline of receptor targeted fusion proteins based on three complementary technology platforms: PORxin, INxin and HUMxin. It focuses on diseases of the prostate via its PORxin platform candidate, PRX302, which has completed three clinical trials for the treatment of BPH, as well as two clinical trials for the treatment of localized recurrent prostate cancer.

About Neuralstem

Neuralstem, Inc. (Neuralstem) is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company. The Company is engaged in research, development and commercialization of central nervous system therapies based on its human neuronal stem cells and its stem-cell derived small molecule compounds. The Company has approximately three assets: its NSI-189 small molecule program, its NSI-566 stem cell therapy program and its chemical entity screening platform. The Company’s technology allows the commercial-scale production of multiple types of central nervous system stem cells, which are under development for the treatment of central nervous system diseases and conditions. The Company is developing NSI-189 for the treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD) and other psychiatric and/or cognitive impairment indications associated with hippocampal atrophy. The Company’s NSI-566 is indicated for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), chronic spinal cord injury and motor deficits due to ischemic stroke.

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