Nabi Biopharmaceuticals (NABI) reported fourth quarter fiscal 2009 (ended Dec 26, 2009) earnings of 2 cents per share (from continuing operations). This was well above the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 11 cents.

The company suffered a loss of 10 cents (from continuing operations) in the year-ago quarter (ended Dec 27, 2008). Nabi’s loss of 37 cents (from continuing operations) for full year 2009 was against a loss of 44 cents (from continuing operations) in 2008. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2009 was a loss of 50 cents.

Revenues for the reported quarter came in at $10.5 million which represents the payments recognized from the sale of its PentaStaph drug to GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals S.A., a subsidiary of GlaxoSmithKline plc. (GSK). The amount is inclusive of $3.1 million from the initial $21.5 million payment from GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals S.A., a $5 million payment for the successful achievement of a performance milestone and $2.4 million related to the services provided by Nabi under the transition services agreement. The company reported no revenues in the year-ago quarter. Full year 2009 revenues were $10.5 million.

Spending on research and development climbed to $4.6 million from $2.7 million in the year-ago quarter. Research and development expenses increased approximately 31% year-over-year to $16.5 million in 2009. General and administrative expenses for the reported quarter came in at approximately $2.2 million which represented a marginal decline from $2.3 million recorded in the year-ago quarter. General and administrative expenses for 2009 came in at $10.0 million as against $12.4 million in 2008.

During 2009, Nabi repurchased $10.4 million, par value, of its 2.875% convertible senior notes for $10.1 million, leaving a balance of $6.1 million, par value, at Dec 26, 2009. The year also saw Nabi repurchasing 2 million shares of its common stock at an average price of $3.94 per share, including 1 million shares in the fourth quarter of 2009.

In Mar 2010, Nabi closed an option and license agreement with GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals S.A for its smoking vaccine candidate NicVAx. The deal is expected to be worth as much as $500 million to Nabi in the event of the candidate being successfully developed and commercialized. The goal behind developing this vaccine is to prevent the nicotine molecules from reaching the brain so that people quit smoking and do not start again.

The company exited the year with cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities of $119.0 million compared to $130.3 million at the end of 2008.

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