Friday, April 30, 2010

Q1 2010 MannKind Earnings Conference

webcase replay
1) Plant inspection passed
2) Looking out for partners in Oncology program (this will be an icing in the cake)
3) Study 117 results show that Al's big hypothesis (stop the progression of diabetes etc) holds water
4) Al calls the oncology as next generational program (watch out DNDN)
5) Dreamboat Bio equivalency results are great
6) Mannkind is still talking to Partners regarding Afrezza
7) Burn rate down

What is not to like? These guys are slowly but surely moving in the right direction.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Know the Mann

1) Read article Mann power
I like this quote
“There just isn’t enough time to do everything I want to do,” says the energetic 80-year-old. “I consider myself fortunate in that many of my endeavors have extended life and improved its quality for people. This inspires and drives me to go on seeking ways to create benefit for others.
“Besides, what else would I do with myself? Play golf? I don’t have the patience for that.”

The Mann File

Courtesy of

Smart Business Los Angeles | November 2005
Born: 1925, Portland, Ore.
Education: Bachelor of arts and master of science degrees, the University of California Los Angeles; honorary doctorates, University of Southern California, The Johns Hopkins University, the Technion and Western University

First job: Research and development staff, Technicolor Corp., exploring electro-optical technology
What is the most important business lesson you’ve learned?
The keys to achieving your goals are commitment, patience and resilience.
What has been your toughest business challenge?
Trying to cure cancer. But I believe it can be done. At MannKind, the immunology division will soon begin trials for a variety of therapeutic vaccines for cancer that have great potential.
Whom do you admire most in business?
No one. I’m too busy to pay attention to what anybody else is doing.
Personal goal: To make the world a better place, one life at a time.
2) Alfred Mann Fact sheet

3) Al Mann's innovations

4) Davidovit's interview

5) Alfred E Mann in WIKI

6) About Al Mann in Alfred E Mann Foundation for biomedical






Friday, April 2, 2010

Getting philosophical about Shorts

(portions of original article got deleted as I tried to paste the image. I've tried to rewrite the missing portions )

If there is one sector that has seen more than its fair share of shorts, it is the Biotech sector. Let us explore some of the reasons.

1) It is simply a no brainer strategy to short biotechs as a group. Since biotechs work in the frontiers of science, the chances of success are really low and the odds of failure are high.

2) Say a well heeled hedge fund or an institutional player shorts a basket of 100 biotechs (say with market cap < 1B, no revenues, no FDA approved drugs etc. In this 100, 70 will drop substantially, 10% will double upon FDA approval (then you cover) and rest will remain flat. In this scenario, the shorts walk away with great profits. 3) All biotechs burn cash as they pursue their R&D activities. The initial capital raised starts to drain quickly and the companies are forced to dilute the existing shareholders by either offering convertibles or additional share offerings. This causes the stock price to drop. If you are long in say MNKD and think the prospects are great, seeing a huge short position may seem puzzling. But for a hedge fund, this could be part of the strategy where a big basket of biotech is shorted.

Shorts do a yeoman service to society by keeping the management honest. If you are a true long, you can find no better friend than a short who keeps the price low.

It is best to be philosophical about shorts. The effort spent on focusing on shorts should rather be spent on the company's management, products and prospects.

Take a look at my tracking portfolio of some biotech companies where most have dropped a great deal in the last 10 years