Critical Analysis: Achieve Life Sciences (ACHV) & Quidel (QDEL)

Achieve Life Sciences (NASDAQ: ACHV) and Quidel (NASDAQ:QDEL) are both medical companies, but which is the superior business? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their earnings, analyst recommendations, dividends, valuation, risk, profitability and institutional ownership.

Risk & Volatility

Achieve Life Sciences has a beta of 1.96, indicating that its share price is 96% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Quidel has a beta of 0.94, indicating that its share price is 6% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

45.3% of Achieve Life Sciences shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 90.3% of Quidel shares are owned by institutional investors. 29.0% of Achieve Life Sciences shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 16.7% of Quidel shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a company is poised for long-term growth.


This table compares Achieve Life Sciences and Quidel’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Achieve Life Sciences N/A -171.81% -140.41%
Quidel 3.08% 12.54% 4.75%

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Achieve Life Sciences and Quidel’s gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Achieve Life Sciences $5.06 million 0.91 -$10.58 million N/A N/A
Quidel $277.74 million 9.43 -$8.16 million ($0.07) -999.00

Quidel has higher revenue and earnings than Achieve Life Sciences.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of current ratings and price targets for Achieve Life Sciences and Quidel, as reported by

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Achieve Life Sciences 0 0 0 0 N/A
Quidel 0 0 6 2 3.25

Quidel has a consensus price target of $58.83, suggesting a potential downside of 15.87%. Given Quidel’s higher possible upside, analysts plainly believe Quidel is more favorable than Achieve Life Sciences.


Quidel beats Achieve Life Sciences on 10 of the 12 factors compared between the two stocks.

Achieve Life Sciences Company Profile

Achieve Life Sciences, Inc., a clinical-stage pharmaceutical company, develops and commercializes smoking cessation aids in the United States and internationally. The company offers Cytisine, a plant-based alkaloid that interacts with nicotine receptors in the brain to help reduce the severity of nicotine withdrawal symptoms. It has a license agreement with Sopharma AD and University of Bristol. The company is headquartered in Bothell, Washington.

Quidel Company Profile

Quidel Corporation develops, manufactures, and markets diagnostic testing solutions for applications in infectious diseases, cardiology, thyroid, women's and general health, eye health, gastrointestinal diseases, and toxicology. The company offers Sofia and Sofia 2 fluorescent immunoassay systems; QuickVue, a lateral flow immunoassay products; and InflammaDry and AdenoPlus products point-of-care products for the detection of infectious and inflammatory diseases and conditions of the eye. It also provides Triage MeterPro, a portable testing platform that enables physicians to promote enhanced health outcomes, as well as the detection of certain drugs of abuse; Triage BNP test for use on Beckman Coulter lab analyzers; and Triage TOX drug screen, which provides results for the determination of the presence of drug and/or the major metabolites in urine. In addition, the company offers traditional cell lines, specimen collection devices, media, and controls for use in laboratories that culture and test for various human viruses, including respiratory and herpes family viruses; and cell-based products comprising tubes, shell vials, and multi-well plates. Further, it provides biomarkers, which include clinical and research products for the assessment of osteoporosis and the evaluation of bone resorption/formation; and enzyme linked immunosorbent assays and reagents for the detection of activation products. Additionally, the company offers AmpliVue hand-held molecular diagnostic assay platform for the detection of the pathogen; Solana, an amplification and detection system; and Lyra molecular real-time polymerase chain reaction assays. The company markets its products through distributors and direct sales force for use in physician offices, hospitals, clinical laboratories, reference laboratories, leading universities, retail clinics, pharmacies, and wellness screening centers. Quidel Corporation was founded in 1979 and is headquartered in San Diego, California.

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