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AF. Bauer Analyst Is Modeling For GW Pharmaceuticals To Double Over The Next Year
John Merriman of Switzerland’s AF. Bauer reiterated an Outperform rating on Kite Pharma Inc KITE 0.64% with a price target boosted to $95 from a previous $85.

According to Merriman, competition from Novartis AG (ADR)'s NVS 1.56% CTL019 CAR-T isn't too concerning as Novartis' prior studies showed a key manufacturing failure rate of 12 percent versus Kite's manufacturing failure rate of just 1 percent.

As noted by STAT, Kite and Novartis are racing to gain approval for their respective gene therapy that turns a patient's own blood cells into "cancer killers."

Merriman also noted Novartis' progress is a few quarters behind Kite's while at the same time Novartis cut back its headcount in 2016, which may give Kite the advantage for the time being in a one-on-one comparison.


Merriman also argued that if Kite gets approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for fast approval to meet the need of the cancer population, then the question of M&A comes into play.

The prospect of FDA approval could make it more attractive to the likes of Gilead Sciences, Inc. GILD 1.57% after the company acknowledged that M&A is a priority for 2017. The analyst argued that acquiring Kite would give Gilead exposure to an un-traditional cancer product that will generate revenue growth
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Andreas F Bauer, a Dutch Investment Firm , Licensed and Authorised by the Dutch Authority for Financial Markets (AFM), under license number 12042561

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