Critical Analysis: Harvard Bioscience (HBIO) & Volcano (VOLC)

Harvard Bioscience (NASDAQ: HBIO) and Volcano (NASDAQ:VOLC) are both small-cap computer and technology companies, but which is the better business? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their institutional ownership, profitability, valuation, analyst recommendations, dividends, earnings and risk.

Institutional and Insider Ownership

60.8% of Harvard Bioscience shares are held by institutional investors. 9.8% of Harvard Bioscience shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and recommmendations for Harvard Bioscience and Volcano, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Harvard Bioscience 0 0 2 0 3.00
Volcano 0 0 0 0 N/A

Harvard Bioscience presently has a consensus price target of $9.00, suggesting a potential upside of 100.00%.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Harvard Bioscience and Volcano’s top-line revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Harvard Bioscience $104.52 million 1.50 -$4.30 million ($0.09) -50.00
Volcano N/A N/A N/A ($0.74) N/A

Volcano has lower revenue, but higher earnings than Harvard Bioscience. Harvard Bioscience is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Volcano, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Profitability

This table compares Harvard Bioscience and Volcano’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Harvard Bioscience -3.16% 1.11% 0.76%
Volcano -8.21% -10.48% -3.68%

Summary

Harvard Bioscience beats Volcano on 8 of the 8 factors compared between the two stocks.

Harvard Bioscience Company Profile

Harvard Bioscience, Inc. is a developer, manufacturer and marketer of a range of scientific instruments, systems and lab consumables used for basic research, drug discovery, clinical and environmental testing. The Company’s products are sold to thousands of researchers in over 100 countries through its global sales organization, Websites, catalogs and through distributors. The Company’s product range is organized into three commercial product families: Cell and Animal Physiology (CAP), Lab Products and Services (LPS), and Molecular Separation and Analysis (MSA). The Company sells these products under brand names, including Harvard Apparatus, KD Scientific, Denville Scientific, AHN, Hoefer, Biochrom, BTX, Warner Instruments, MCS, HEKA, Hugo Sachs Elektronik, Panlab, Coulbourn Instruments, TBSI and CMA Microdialysis. The Company’s products consist of instruments, consumables and systems that are made up of various individual products.

Volcano Company Profile

Volcano Corporation designs, develops, manufactures and commercializes a suite of precision guided therapy tools including intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) and fractional flow reserve (FFR) products. The Company markets its products to physicians, nurses and technicians who perform endovascular based coronary and peripheral interventional procedures in hospitals and to other personnel who make purchasing decisions on behalf of hospitals. The Company’s products consist of consoles that are marketed as stand-alone units or as units that can be integrated into a variety of hospital-based interventional surgical suites called catheterization laboratories, or cath labs. The Company has developed customized cath lab versions of these consoles. The Company sells products directly to customers in the United States, Japan, certain European markets and South Africa. The Company’s products include consoles, IVUS products, FFR products, Pioneer plus re-entry catheter and crux VCF system.

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