A return to the Nasdaq (or another national exchange) and ongoing commercial success promises to address a significant disconnect in the valuation of Pressure Bioscience (OTCMKT:PBIO), according to Ric Schumacher.
Schumacher, the company’s founder and chief executive, says he’s continued to run the group as though it was still on the Nasdaq since it was last on the premier market.
The exit from Nasdaq, in 2012, coincided with a dimming of investor interest in the stock, but, momentum has returned to the Pressure Bioscience price amid notable operational successes and a broader enthusiasm toward bio-tech, medical technology and the healthcare sector.
It rose 42% in 2015, rising from 26 cents to 37 cents by end of the year.
Nevertheless, Schumacher says whilst the stock has moved higher, the “bloom is not off the rose”.
“We feel we are highly, highly undervalued,” he said in a recent interview.
“We feel it based upon our comparables, and we feel it based on discounted cashflow models of where this company could be”
“We don’t believe that the value of what we have has caught up to the stock price, although lately the stock price has certainly moved – and we’re very happy with that – but we still think that there’s a long way to go.”
Sales successes through 2015 and growing industry interest in Pressure Bioscience’s patented technology are central to Schumacher’s excitement.
The company’s proprietary PCT-HD system - a new technique for ‘opening’ cells using pulses of pressure - has in recent years been trialled and adopted by leading scientists.
It is now believed that this momentum is now building towards a breakthrough.
Schumacher highlights Pressure BioSciences recent quarterly financials which showed sales 55% above comparatives for last year (and product sales were about 30% above the same period of 2014).
And he expects this trend will continue.
“We’re giving guidance that next year will be better than this year, and we’re also giving guidance that we’ve been talking to some big companies and we expect to be announcing something (about that) before the end of the year.
“We have a unique, patented technology that is now beginning to be appreciated by scientists around the world.”
Growing sales momentum reflects that the bioscience research and development community is now beginning to modernise its approach to ‘cell opening’.
Schumacher highlighted that generally the life sciences have moved on significantly in past decades with the focus increasingly upon the intricacies within cells rather than what occurs around the outsides of them.
However, he says the technological approach to actually ‘open’ cells remains relatively crude and are still largely the same as they were in the 1980s (when he was last in the lab in a scientific capacity).
“Unfortunately, we’re using many of the same methods back when I was a scientist in the lab, and yet the methods for detecting what we’re looking for in cells – the proteins, the lipids, the DNA – have gotten much, much better in the last 20, 30 or 40 years,” he said.
At Pressure BioSciences we’ve developed this new method, never been used before, to open the cell and get “all the good stuff” out.
“Essentially it is like a sponge, we squeeze it out. Where others beat up ‘the sponge’ using mechanical, we put it in a pressure chamber. It is much gentler, it is much more controllable.”
Schumacher points out that, generally speaking, scientists are stubborn people by nature, and convincing them to change their working practices has been one of the biggest challenges for the company.
But, by targeting what he calls ‘key opinion leaders’ in certain specialist fields Schumacher says Pressure Bioscience has started to overcome this hurdle.
“You have to go after the key opinion leaders. The scientists around the world that are recognised as the experts in studying proteins, DNA, RNA and lipids.
“We have to go after them and get them to use the technology with the assumption that once they’ve used it, they’ll realise how much better the system is.
“That’s what we’ve done.
“It has taken a long time, and, as I’ve said multiple times in the last six months, I believe we at the inflection point and we’re ready to move the company on to that next level.”
Schumacher highlights that now, following these efforts, the group’s technology has been demonstrated via multiple papers in journals and scientific papers that it has a number of advantages over the traditional methods.
Investors will now have to look on keenly to see whether the bullishness of the Pressure Bioscience boss is reflected through the stock’s performance through 2016.