Despite higher revenues, Nova lost $14.2 million in '90


Nova Pharmaceutical Corp. reported yesterday that it lost $14.2 million on revenues of $36.1 million last year.

Revenues increased nearly 130 percent over 1989 for the East Baltimore company, which is concentrating on researching and developing new drugs and drug-delivery systems. But Nova's $14.2 million loss also surpassed that of the previous year, when the company posted a $12.7 million deficit.

The 9-year-old company's primary efforts are in developing anti-inflammatory drugs and pharmaceuticals that combat central nervous system disorders, Kira Bacon, a company spokeswoman, said.

"I would say that for a company in the research and development stage, losses are to be expected because we are investing in our future product line," Ms. Bacon said.

"So in terms of the increase of the loss in 1990 over 1989, in general it reflects the fact that we are investing more and more in the research and development side of things as our products get further along in the pipeline."

She declined to speculate when her company might turn the corner toward profitability.

"We don't forecast when we are going to have a profit," Ms. Bacon said. "In our industry, there are many things that can impact a time frame. Right now, our most important objective is to get our projects through the research and development stage and into the marketplace. Until that time, it will be difficult to go from recording losses to recording profits."

Nova's improved revenues were primarily attributable to the performance of four drugs the company acquired from SmithKline Beecham and is selling on its own, according to Ms. Bacon.

One Nova project is an effort to develop pharmaceuticals known as bradykinin antagonists. Bradykinins are a naturally occurring substance in the human body that is a primary cause of pain and inflammation. A bradykinin antagonist works to counter those effects, Ms. Bacon said.

The maker of pharmaceuticals has about 300 employees, 220 of whom are based in Baltimore. The remainder are sales personnel scattered throughout the country.

Three months ended 12/31/90

.. .. .. Revenue.. .. .. Net.. .. .. .. Share

'90.. 9,984,129.. . (4,230,309).. . (0.16)

'89.. 4,004,193.. . (3,992,628).. . (0.15)

% change. +149.4.. .. .. .. --.. .. .. .. . --

Twelve months ended 12/31/90

.. .. .. Revenue.. .. .. Net.. .. .. .. Share

'90.. 36,094,728.. (14,245,395).. ..(0.53)

'89.. 15,697,568.. (12,687,993).. ..(0.48)

% change.. +129.9.. .. .. --.. .. .. .. .. --

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