A bullish interview by Portage Biotech (NasdaqCM: PRTG) CEO Ian Walters sets the stage for a return trip back to its YTD highs of $44.98, representing a more than 100% gain from current levels. In fact, everything he said supports the narrative that its current share price is far less indicative of what's happening in the clinic. In fact, with multiple shots on goal, its current share price hardly represents PRTG's industry experience, leadership, and clinical pipeline at all. The excellent news is that with near-term catalysts expected, its valuation gap should close.
In fact, data from its PORT trials could be the first of several catalysts, which could start as early as this month, with investors expecting an update from its Phase 2 PORT-1 "Invincible Trial" in the coming weeks. Behind that, first-in-human dosing is anticipated for its NY-ESO-1 trial in a few weeks, and a third trial IMP-MEL was cleared to commence back in April. Thus, at least three trials are advancing in the back half of this year.
Better still, while PRTG may not talk to the markets as much as its investors may like, investors have presented a pretty solid timeline of anticipated events. The better news is that they all not only make sense but also show that PRTG stock may offer a compelling opportunity to catch shares at substantially undervalued levels. And the video gives substance to that statement. It also provides reasons for investors to remain decidedly bullish about the company's future.
Indeed, while Dr. Walters presents a case for why investors should value his company's assets, including its management, he ends it with an expectation for value creation to potentially come sooner rather than later. In fact, reading between the lines, he may have set the stage for potential spin-offs of some assets, with some believing that its ownership in high-value assets IOx Therapeutics or Intensity could be perfect candidates for IPO and/or partnerships. The interview makes no secret of its strategy to act as an incubator of promising assets and then monetize them by finding ways to accelerate their development.
Better still, he laid out how that strategy works. There, the plan is relatively simple. Find and acquire compelling assets, develop them, and then seize upon partnership and licensing opportunities with Big Pharma companies. Keep in mind, the entire team at PRTG is well-acquainted in that area, with strong ties to Bristol Myers Squibb (NYSE: BMY) and other leading drug market players. In fact, the team at PRTG has already helped develop and take several blockbuster drugs to market during their professional history.
Keep in mind, too, PRTG has additional revenue-generating assets in its quiver. Its roughly 44% stake in Stimunity can be a massive value driver in the coming quarters. Moreover, assets and IP related to its PORT trials, with initial data from one imminent, add more long-term firepower.
Add to that its planned PORT-4 and PORT-5 trials expected to commence their respective studies in Q1 2022, the value proposition has never looked better. And after completing a recent capital raise, PRTG appears to be in its best share in history to advance these multiple initiatives.
In fact, a sum of its parts valuation clearly shows its current share price substantially missing the mark. It's also important to point out that at this MCAP, PRTG is valued at less than its original valuation for only SalvaRx, and misses the additional inherent value from its deals with Intensity, Stimunity, Merck (NYSE: MRK), and the BMY partnerships.
Keep in mind, too, asset valuation (sourced here) stood at $215.9m when deals were accounted for nearly three years ago. The company has been made substantially stronger since then. Thus, its current $205 million MCAP appears to considerably misrepresent its assets.
Thus, positioning at these levels could be more than a wise investment decision. It could also deliver near exponential returns sooner rather than later.
In fact, with PORT-1 data imminent, its PORT-2 trial expected to be in the clinic in less than a month, and a multi-faceted pipeline to attract Big Pharma when the time is right, investment consideration at these levels is more than compelling; it's about as actionable as its ever been.
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