Calithera Biosciences (NASDAQ: CALA) and Cascadian Therapeutics (NASDAQ:CASC) are both small-cap medical companies, but which is the better investment? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their earnings, profitability, valuation, institutional ownership, dividends, risk and analyst recommendations.

Profitability

This table compares Calithera Biosciences and Cascadian Therapeutics’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Calithera Biosciences N/A -26.72% -20.91%
Cascadian Therapeutics N/A -42.30% -39.68%

Risk and Volatility

Calithera Biosciences has a beta of 3.32, suggesting that its share price is 232% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Cascadian Therapeutics has a beta of 2.32, suggesting that its share price is 132% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares Calithera Biosciences and Cascadian Therapeutics’ gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Calithera Biosciences $11.45 million 46.48 -$29.12 million ($1.26) -11.90
Cascadian Therapeutics N/A N/A -$47.29 million ($1.61) -2.24

Calithera Biosciences has higher revenue and earnings than Cascadian Therapeutics. Calithera Biosciences is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Cascadian Therapeutics, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

55.1% of Calithera Biosciences shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 83.9% of Cascadian Therapeutics shares are owned by institutional investors. 16.3% of Calithera Biosciences shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 20.7% of Cascadian Therapeutics shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, hedge funds and endowments believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of current ratings and recommmendations for Calithera Biosciences and Cascadian Therapeutics, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Calithera Biosciences 0 1 4 0 2.80
Cascadian Therapeutics 0 1 3 0 2.75

Calithera Biosciences presently has a consensus price target of $14.40, suggesting a potential downside of 4.00%. Cascadian Therapeutics has a consensus price target of $7.00, suggesting a potential upside of 93.91%. Given Cascadian Therapeutics’ higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Cascadian Therapeutics is more favorable than Calithera Biosciences.

Summary

Calithera Biosciences beats Cascadian Therapeutics on 8 of the 11 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Calithera Biosciences

Calithera Biosciences, Inc. is a clinical-stage pharmaceutical company. The Company focuses on discovering and developing small molecule drugs directed against tumor and immune cell targets that control key metabolic pathways in the tumor microenvironment. It is engaged in developing agents that take advantage of the metabolic requirements of tumor cells and cancer-fighting immune cells, such as cytotoxic T-cells. The Company’s lead product candidate, CB-839, is a critical enzyme in tumor cells. Its other product candidate, CB-1158, is being developed for hematology and oncology indications. CB-1158 is a potent and selective orally bioavailable inhibitor of the enzyme arginase. CB-839 is a selective, reversible and orally bioavailable inhibitor of human glutaminase. CB-1158 has single agent anti-tumor activity in syngeneic mouse tumor models that has been demonstrated to act through an immune mechanism. CB-1158 is being tested in a Phase I clinical trial in patients with solid tumors.

About Cascadian Therapeutics

Cascadian Therapeutics, Inc., formerly Oncothyreon Inc., is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company. The Company focuses on the development of therapeutic products for the treatment of cancer. The Company’s clinical-stage product candidate includes ONT-380, an orally active and selective small-molecule human epidermal growth factor receptor (HER) 2 inhibitor. The Company’s ONT-10 is a therapeutic vaccine targeting the Mucin 1 peptide antigen (MUC1). The Company is engaged in developing preclinical product candidates in oncology using its Checkpoint kinase 1 (Chk1) kinase inhibitor and protocell technology. The Company completed the evaluation of approximately two dosing cohorts in its Phase Ib trial of ONT-10 in combination with the anti-CD27 T-cell agonist antibody varlilumab in collaboration with other company. The Company has completed Phase I trial of ONT-380, with both dose-escalation and expansion components. The Company has initiated Phase Ib trials of ONT-380.

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