Critical Comparison: Agenus (NASDAQ:AGEN) and Autolus Therapeutics (NASDAQ:AUTL)

Agenus (NASDAQ:AGEN) and Autolus Therapeutics (NASDAQ:AUTL) are both small-cap medical companies, but which is the better investment? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their risk, earnings, institutional ownership, dividends, analyst recommendations, valuation and profitability.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of recent ratings and recommmendations for Agenus and Autolus Therapeutics, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Agenus 0 0 1 0 3.00
Autolus Therapeutics 0 0 3 0 3.00

Agenus currently has a consensus price target of $5.00, indicating a potential upside of 83.15%. Autolus Therapeutics has a consensus price target of $45.50, indicating a potential upside of 353.64%. Given Autolus Therapeutics’ higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Autolus Therapeutics is more favorable than Agenus.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

33.4% of Agenus shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 43.4% of Autolus Therapeutics shares are held by institutional investors. 5.2% of Agenus shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, hedge funds and endowments believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Profitability

This table compares Agenus and Autolus Therapeutics’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Agenus -275.43% N/A -68.45%
Autolus Therapeutics N/A N/A N/A

Volatility and Risk

Agenus has a beta of 1.86, indicating that its stock price is 86% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Autolus Therapeutics has a beta of 0.4, indicating that its stock price is 60% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Agenus and Autolus Therapeutics’ top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Agenus $36.78 million 9.97 -$159.69 million ($1.44) -1.90
Autolus Therapeutics $1.41 million 285.58 -$44.75 million ($1.42) -7.06

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

Summary

Autolus Therapeutics beats Agenus on 8 of the 12 factors compared between the two stocks.

Agenus Company Profile

Agenus Inc., a clinical-stage immuno-oncology company, focuses on the discovery and development of therapies that engage the body's immune system to fight cancer. The company offers Retrocyte Display, an antibody discovery platform for the identification of fully-human and humanized monoclonal antibodies; SECANT yeast display, an antibody discovery platform used for the generation of novel monoclonal antibodies; and phage display technologies. It is also developing checkpoint modulating antibody candidates targeting GITR, OX40, TIM-3, LAG-3, and others. In addition, the company develops vaccine programs, including Prophage vaccine candidate; AutoSynVax, a synthetic neoantigen; and PhosPhoSynVax, a vaccine candidate designed to induce immunity against a class of tumor specific neoepitopes. Further, it develops QS-21 Stimulon adjuvant, a saponin-based vaccine adjuvant. Additionally, the company engages in the development of CTLA-4 and PD-1 antagonists; and anti-CTLA-4, CD137, and TIGIT antibodies, as well as various multi-specific antibodies that are under various stages of development. Agenus Inc. has collaboration agreements with Incyte Corporation, Merck Sharpe & Dohme, and Recepta Biopharma SA.; and collaboration with Gilead Sciences, Inc. to develop immuno-oncology therapies. The company was formerly known as Antigenics Inc. and changed its name to Agenus Inc. in January 2011. Agenus Inc. was founded in 1994 and is headquartered in Lexington, Massachusetts.

Autolus Therapeutics Company Profile

Autolus Therapeutics plc, a biopharmaceutical company, develops T cell therapies for the treatment of cancer. The company is developing AUTO1, a CD19-targeting programmed T cell therapy, which is in Phase I trial to reduce the risk of severe cytokine release syndrome; AUTO2, a dual-targeting programmed T cell therapy that is in Phase I/II clinical trial for the treatment of relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma; and AUTO3, a dual-targeting programmed T cell therapy, which is in Phase I/II clinical trials for treating relapsed or refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma. It is also developing AUTO4, a programmed T cell therapy that is in Phase I/II clinical trial for the treatment of peripheral T-cell lymphoma; and AUTO6, a programmed T cell therapy for treating neuroblastoma. Autolus Therapeutics plc has a collaboration partnership with AbCellera Biologics Inc. on antibody discovery project. The company was founded in 2014 and is headquartered in London, the United Kingdom.

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