After a 'pivotal' year, AMRI expects another leap in 2014

Former Teva exec William Marth is the new CEO of AMRI
AMRI CEO William Marth

Last year, Albany, NY, contract developer AMRI ($AMRI) watched its founding CEO retire and its business model evolve, shifting its priorities to deliver a jump in revenue, and now the company believes it's on track for bigger growth in 2014.

AMRI raked in $246.6 million on the year, a 9% increase over 2012, with net income coming in at $12.7 million to beat out the prior year's $3.8 million loss. Leading the way was the company's large-scale manufacturing business, which grew 14% to $132.6 million, followed by its discovery and small-scale segment, which increased 5% to $77.4 million. Royalty revenue, which once accounted for much of AMRI's business, ticked up just 2% to $36.6 million.

But AMRI's ability to count on cuts of clients' drugs to boost profits is soon to be a thing of the past, as the company is expecting royalty revenue to plummet 29% in 2014. However, ex-CEO Thomas D'Ambra more than prepared for the shift, and, with a "pivotal" year in the books, AMRI has positioned itself to cash in on a boom in contract manufacturing, new chief William Marth said, expecting between 10% and 14% revenue growth for the full year.

"We have come a long way from our origins as a research-oriented company largely dependent on royalties," Marth said in a statement. "We sit here today with a large, diversified portfolio of customers--over 300-plus from large pharma, biotech and specialty--and have exposure to a growing customer base, as the pharmaceutical industry looks to optimize their R&D investments. Based on changes we have made over the last few years, AMRI is well-positioned to capture what we believe are attractive growth opportunities in a developing and growing market."

In the fourth quarter, AMRI posted total revenue of $67.1 million, virtually unchanged from the same period in 2012 as a 9% drop in royalties wiped away gains in contract sales. Net income came in at $4.5 million, above the prior year's $1.9 million.

AMRI finished out the year with about $176 million in cash, and Marth said the company will keep its eye out for deals that could further expand its business.

- read the full results