UPDATE: Maxim Maintains Buy On Keryx On The Heels Of Ferric Citrate FDA Appoval

In a research note released Friday, Maxim Group analyst Jason Kolbert maintained a Buy rating on Keryx Biopharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: KERX) with a $24 price target, following today’s FDA approval of the company’s Ferric Citrate (formerly known as Zerenex) for the control of serum phosphorus levels in patients with chronic kidney disease on dialysis.

Kolbert noted, “Ferric citrate is now FDA approved, we assume a launch begins by year end . Our revenues forecasts begin in 1Q-2015, with $96 million for the full year. We expect royalties from the company’s Japanese partner to be in the low double-digit range, which we estimate at 12%. We base our US estimates on market of 500,000 end stage renal disease patients in the US, of whom 400,000 (80%) are on renal dialysis. Of these patients, 320,000 (80%) are taking a phosphate binder.”

The analyst added, “We see additional catalysts to drive the stock over the next year, these include: (1) Announcement of Pricing and a new name, (2)data presentation at the American Society for Nephrology meeting in November, with additional data presentations and publications at other upcoming scientific meetings; these presentations should help drive market share and the message; (3) a Phase III trial for Zerenex in predialysis patients (P-CKD) is expected to begin in 4Q14; (4) EMEA approval in Mid-2014; Keryx’s filing for European approval in dialysis and predialysis patients was accepted in April 2014; and (5) an EU launch in individual European “Big Five” countries in 2H2015.”

According to TipRanks.com, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, analyst Jason Kolbert has a total average return of 17.0% and a 62.8% success rate. Kolbert has a 29.0% average return when recommending KERX, and is ranked #112 out of 3270 analysts.

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