Head to Head Contrast: Obalon Therapeutics (OBLN) vs. Cerus (CERS)

Obalon Therapeutics (NASDAQ: OBLN) and Cerus (NASDAQ:CERS) are both small-cap healthcare companies, but which is the superior business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, profitability, institutional ownership, valuation, dividends, risk and earnings.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Obalon Therapeutics and Cerus’ top-line revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Obalon Therapeutics $3.39 million 28.49 -$20.46 million ($1.93) -2.19
Cerus $39.28 million 13.18 -$62.90 million ($0.59) -7.05

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

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of recent ratings and price targets for Obalon Therapeutics and Cerus, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Obalon Therapeutics 0 1 2 0 2.67
Cerus 0 1 4 0 2.80

Obalon Therapeutics currently has a consensus price target of $10.00, indicating a potential upside of 136.41%. Cerus has a consensus price target of $6.20, indicating a potential upside of 49.04%. Given Obalon Therapeutics’ higher probable upside, research analysts clearly believe Obalon Therapeutics is more favorable than Cerus.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

44.2% of Obalon Therapeutics shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 54.7% of Cerus shares are owned by institutional investors. 16.4% of Obalon Therapeutics shares are owned by company insiders. Comparatively, 7.4% of Cerus shares are owned by company 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.


This table compares Obalon Therapeutics and Cerus’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Obalon Therapeutics -459.54% -59.77% -47.02%
Cerus -159.35% -142.18% -67.72%

Obalon Therapeutics Company Profile

Obalon Therapeutics, Inc. is a United States-based commercial-stage medical device company focused on developing and commercializing medical devices to treat obese and overweight people by facilitating weight loss. The Company’s product, Obalon balloon system, is a swallowable, gas-filled intragastric balloon designed to provide weight loss in obese patients. The Obalon balloon system is intended to be used as an adjunct to a moderate intensity diet and behavior modification program. All balloons must be removed six months after the first balloon is placed. The Obalon balloon system intends to provide patients and physicians with a reversible and repeatable weight loss solution in an outpatient setting, without altering patient anatomy or requiring surgery. The Company has received Premarket approval (PMA) for its Obalon balloon system based on the results of its United States pivotal clinical trial, referred to as the SMART trial.

Cerus Company Profile

Cerus Corporation is a biomedical products company. The Company is engaged in developing and commercializing the INTERCEPT Blood System for blood safety. The Company operates through blood safety segment. The Company’s INTERCEPT Blood System is based on its technology for controlling biological replication, and is designed to reduce blood-borne pathogens in donated blood components intended for transfusion. The Company’s INTERCEPT Blood System is designed to target and inactivate blood-borne pathogens, such as viruses, including human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), West Nile, Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), hepatitis B and C; bacteria and parasites, as well as harmful white blood cells, while preserving the therapeutic properties of platelet, plasma and red blood cell transfusion products. The Company’s INTERCEPT Blood System is for use with blood components, including plasma, platelets, and red blood cells.

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