Metabolix formalizes partnership with Samsung, reports Q2 results

By Erin Voegele | August 07, 2013

Metabolix Inc. recently released its financial results for the second quarter, reporting that the company is formalizing its collaboration with Samsung Fine Chemicals.

In a call to discuss the quarterly results, Rick Eno, president and CEO of Metabolix, explained that the company has been working with Samsung on biodegradable biopolymers since early 2012. Under the formalized arrangement, he said the two companies will work together with the goal of expanding the global market for biodegradable polymers.

According to Eno, Samsung, based in South Korea, is pursuing a similar strategy to that of Metabolix in the biobased polymer space. He said Metabolix brings its PHA product family to the agreement, with Samsung brings its PBAT and PBS biodegradable biopolymers. In terms of geography, Eno said Metabolix is focused on the U.S. and European markets, while Samsung has a strong market presence in Korea and across Asia. The products developed under the collaboration will be designed to deliver the best performance and value to targeted customer applications, he continued.

During the call, Eno also noted that the film market continues to be a growing part of Metabolix’s business. Since the fourth quarter of last year when the Mvera B5008 compostable film product was launched, the company has seen its quarterly shipment volume for the product line grow steadily, he said.

In addition, Eno said establishing an ongoing source of PHA supply to integrate with other biodegradable biopolymers for customer benefit is also a key part of the company’s strategy. “We continue to develop our supplier relationship with Tianjin GreenBio Materials in China,” he said. “In Spain, the situation at Antibioticos is becoming clearer and we are actively engaged in an evaluation of options for manufacturing at that site. In addition, we are conducting due diligence on two potential U.S. manufacturing sites."

Regarding financial results, Metabolix reported total second quarter revenue of $1.7 million, up from $900,000 during the same period of last year. Second quarter revenue consisted primarily of revenue from product sales and work performed on government research grants. Grant revenue of $600,000 increased by $100,000 compared to the second quarter of 2012.

Biopolymer product orders of $400,000 were shipped and billed during the second quarter. However, revenue recognition was deferred for the majority of these shipments in accordance with company policy to defer product revenue for the greater of 60 days or until customer payment. During the quarter $800,000 in revenue was recognized, primarily from shipments completed during the previous quarter.

Metabolix reported a net loss of $7.9 million for the second quarter of 2013. The same loss was reported for the same three-month period of last year. A net loss of $14.6 million was reported for the first half of 213, compared to a net income of $20.9 million reported in the first half of 2102.