Marinus Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:MRNS) and IVERIC bio (NASDAQ:ISEE) are both small-cap medical companies, but which is the superior investment? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their valuation, analyst recommendations, risk, profitability, earnings, institutional ownership and dividends.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current ratings and price targets for Marinus Pharmaceuticals and IVERIC bio, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Marinus Pharmaceuticals 0 1 5 0 2.83
IVERIC bio 0 1 2 0 2.67

Marinus Pharmaceuticals currently has a consensus price target of $4.87, indicating a potential upside of 113.45%. IVERIC bio has a consensus price target of $1.25, indicating a potential downside of 66.12%. Given Marinus Pharmaceuticals’ stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, research analysts clearly believe Marinus Pharmaceuticals is more favorable than IVERIC bio.

Profitability

This table compares Marinus Pharmaceuticals and IVERIC bio’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Marinus Pharmaceuticals N/A -131.58% -83.72%
IVERIC bio N/A -59.76% -53.79%

Volatility and Risk

Marinus Pharmaceuticals has a beta of 2.1, suggesting that its share price is 110% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, IVERIC bio has a beta of 2.19, suggesting that its share price is 119% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

68.2% of Marinus Pharmaceuticals shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 63.6% of IVERIC bio shares are owned by institutional investors. 2.4% of Marinus Pharmaceuticals shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 4.3% of IVERIC bio shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Marinus Pharmaceuticals and IVERIC bio’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Marinus Pharmaceuticals N/A N/A -$54.12 million ($0.99) -2.30
IVERIC bio $209.98 million 0.88 -$58.86 million ($1.39) -2.65

Marinus Pharmaceuticals has higher earnings, but lower revenue than IVERIC bio. IVERIC bio is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Marinus Pharmaceuticals, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Summary

Marinus Pharmaceuticals beats IVERIC bio on 7 of the 12 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Marinus Pharmaceuticals

Marinus Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company, focuses on developing and commercializing therapeutics to treat epilepsy and neuropsychiatric disorders. Its clinical stage product candidate, ganaxolone, is an allosteric modulator of GABAA, developed in three dose forms, including intravenous (IV), oral capsule, and oral liquid for adult and pediatric patient populations in acute and chronic care, and in-patient and self-administered settings. The company's ganaxolone product candidate exhibits anti-seizure, anti-depression, and anti-anxiety actions through its effects on synaptic and extrasynaptic GABAA receptors. It is also developing ganaxolone for cyclin-ependent kinase-like 5 deficiency disorder, PCDH19-related epilepsy, postpartum depression, refractory status epilepticus, and other indications. Marinus Pharmaceuticals, Inc. has a collaboration agreement with NovaMedica, LLC; and license and supply agreements with Purdue Neuroscience Company and CyDex Pharmaceuticals, Inc. The company was founded in 2003 and is based in Radnor, Pennsylvania.

About IVERIC bio

IVERIC bio, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company, develops novel therapies to treat ophthalmic diseases with a focus on age-related and orphan retinal diseases. The company is developing Zimura, an inhibitor of complement factor C5, which is in Phase IIb clinical trials for the treatment of geographic atrophy (GA), a late-stage form of dry age-related macular degeneration (AMD) characterized by retinal cell death and degeneration of tissue in the central portion of the retina known as the macula; and autosomal recessive Stargardt disease (STGD1), which is an orphan inherited retinal disease (IRD). It is also developing High temperature requirement A serine peptidase 1 protein (HtrA1) inhibitors for the treatment of GA secondary to dry AMD and other age-related retinal diseases, such as wet AMD and idiopathic polypoidal choroidal vasculopathy. The company has a license agreement with the University of Florida Research Foundation (UFRF) and the University of Pennsylvania for the development and commercialization of novel adeno-associated virus (AAV) gene therapy product candidate for the treatment of rhodopsin-mediated autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (RHO-adRP); and Best disease and other bestrophinopathies. It also has a research agreement with the University of Massachusetts Medical School to utilize the minigene therapy approach to create AAV gene therapy product candidates targeting Leber Congenital Amaurosis type 10 and STGD1; and to evaluate various AAV gene delivery methods for potential application in the eye. The company was formerly known as Ophthotech Corporation and changed its name to IVERIC bio, Inc. in April 2019. IVERIC bio, Inc. was founded in 2007 and is headquartered in New York, New York.

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