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May 24th, 2024 | 07:00 CEST

NVIDIA, Vidac Pharma, Bayer - Opportunities for innovation and growth

  • Pharma
  • Biotechnology
  • Growth
  • AI
Photo credits: NVIDIA

The next industrial revolution has begun – companies and countries are working with firms like NVIDIA to transform traditional data centres worth billions of euros into accelerated computing hubs and build a new type of data centre: AI factories to produce artificial intelligence. The areas of application are vast, including data processing, generative AI, pharmaceutical research, weather simulations, robotics and many more. Vidac Pharma, for example, is an exciting candidate in the field of drug research. Their innovative approach in oncology can reverse the function of cancer cells. If successful, Bayer would have less to worry about. The Leverkusen-based company is fighting the wave of US lawsuits in connection with RoundUp®. The glyphosate-based herbicide is suspected of causing cancer. Bayer is now pursuing a new strategy in the face of the six-figure lawsuits. Where do investors find the best innovations and greatest growth opportunities?

time to read: 7 minutes | Author: Juliane Zielonka

Table of contents:

    David Elsley, CEO, Cardiol Therapeutics Inc.
    "[...] As a company dedicated to developing treatments for rare heart diseases, we see this as an opportune moment to contribute to the fight against heart disease and make meaningful strides in improving heart health worldwide. [...]" David Elsley, CEO, Cardiol Therapeutics Inc.

    Full interview


    NVIDIA exceeds expectations: Revenue soars by 262% thanks to data centre growth

    According to Jensen Huang, founder and CEO of NVIDIA, AI will bring significant productivity gains across nearly every industry and help companies become more cost and energy-efficient. New revenue opportunities are also waiting to be discovered.

    NVIDIA is about to enter the next phase of growth. The new software offering 'NVIDIA NIM' brings optimized AI solutions to enterprises, which can be deployed in the cloud as well as on-premises data centres and on dedicated AI PCs supported by an extensive network of partners. "The strong and increasing demand for generative AI training and inference has driven our growth in the data centre space. Beyond cloud service providers, generative AI has expanded to internet companies, enterprises, sovereign AI, automotive and healthcare customers, creating multi-billion-dollar markets," emphasizes CEO Huang. Investors recognize that NVIDIA is able to create its own markets entirely. It seems that Hensen is following 1:1 the Blue Ocean Strategy, which says exactly that.

    In terms of figures, NVIDIA exceeded expectations. Excluding special items, the Company earned USD 6.12 per share, above analysts' estimates of USD 5.58. Revenue increased 262% year-over-year to USD 26 billion, exceeding the expected USD 24.6 billion. Particularly notable was the growth in the data centre segment, which increased 427% to USD 22.6 billion. For the second quarter, NVIDIA expects revenues of around USD 28 billion, which is above analyst estimates of USD 26.66 billion.

    The AI company has announced a 10:1 stock split to make share ownership more accessible to employees and investors. This split is made possible by an amendment to NVIDIA's Restated Certificate of Incorporation, which increases the number of authorized shares of common stock accordingly. Each stockholder who owns shares on Thursday, June 6, 2024, will receive nine additional shares to be issued after the close of trading on Friday, June 7, 2024. Trading in the split shares will commence on Monday, June 10, 2024.

    NVIDIA's Asian suppliers, including memory chip manufacturers SK Hynix, Samsung Electronics, and the semiconductor company TSMC, continue to report profits.

    Breakthrough in cancer therapy: Vidac Pharma develops innovative drugs against oncological and dermatological diseases

    Companies in the healthcare sector, such as Vidac Pharma in the UK, are beneficiaries of this AI technology. Vidac is an innovative clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company dedicated to discovering and developing first-in-class drugs to help people with various oncologic and onco-dermatologic diseases.

    Cancer cells prefer to break down glucose in a specific way, resulting in an acidic and oxygen-depleted environment. This makes it more difficult for conventional treatments such as radiotherapy or chemotherapy to fight the tumor. In addition, this process inhibits the immune system, which promotes tumor growth. New drugs, such as those developed by Vidac Pharma, could bring a breakthrough here and improve the effectiveness of treatment.

    Vidac Pharma's drug candidates target an enzyme called hexokinase (HK), which plays an important role in the abnormal metabolism of cancer cells. In many cancer tissues, however, the amount of HK is increased because the enzymes bind to the mitochondria, the "power plants" of the cells. This boosts the production of energy in the cells, which in turn promotes the growth of tumors.

    Vidac's pipeline includes innovative therapies for the treatment of cancer. Their breakthrough is a new mode of action that reverses the abnormal metabolism of cancer cells. Reverse? Yes, you read that correctly. The active ingredient changes the abnormal cells so that they lose their malignancy.

    Vidac has a strong IP portfolio with seven patent families. The skin cream VDA-1102 is the first drug in its new class that selectively attacks malignant skin cells and spares healthy skin. In preclinical and clinical studies, this ointment has shown high efficacy in actinic keratosis (AK), an early form of skin cancer. Actinic keratosis is characterized by reddish, rough patches of skin in areas that are heavily exposed to the sun. VDA-1102 is just as effective as existing treatments but causes fewer side effects. A Phase 2b study in AK patients showed complete clearance of lesions in 40% of patients and an overall reduction of lesions by 80%.

    Vidac has demonstrated exceptional safety in Phase 2b for VDA-1102 in actinic keratosis (AK), which allowed the Company to move directly into a Phase 2 trial for cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL), a rare cancer of the immune system. CTCL is caused by mutations in T-cells and results in skin lesions before the disease spreads. This so-called orphan disease could be eligible for accelerated approval. The ongoing Phase 2 trial showed promising preliminary results in January 2024, with 50% of participants showing an improved effect compared to standard treatment.

    Another promising compound from Vidac is VDA-1275, which has shown strong results in research against a variety of solid tumors, both alone and in combination with other treatments, and stimulates the immune response. Vidac plans to use VDA-1275 as a systemic drug for the treatment of solid tumors. Systemic drugs enter the bloodstream and are distributed throughout the body via the circulatory system. The first clinical trials are scheduled to begin in the first quarter of 2025.

    Bayer plans to strengthen legal protection against RoundUp® lawsuits after US setbacks

    **After setbacks in several US states this year, Bayer has announced, according to AP News, that it will strengthen its legal protection against the large number of lawsuits related to the glyphosate-containing weedkiller RoundUp®.

    Bayer continues to deny allegations that the herbicide causes cancer in humans. Some 170,000 lawsuits are pending, and the Leverkusen-based company has set aside USD 16 billion to settle them. Although some studies have linked glyphosate to cancer, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has stated that it is unlikely to be carcinogenic to humans if used as directed. Bayer considers the legal battle "unsustainable" and is seeking loopholes from legislators in individual US states.

    In April, Republicans in the Iowa Senate passed a bill that would prohibit residents of the eponymous state with serious illnesses from suing pesticide manufacturers for failing to warn of potential health risks such as cancer. Iowa is considered the breadbasket of the US.

    Bayer has lobbied for these bills, which could block Iowa, Missouri and Idaho from the key legal issue of "the drug causes cancer." Although bills were passed in at least one chamber in Iowa and Missouri, they ultimately failed in all three states. However, the moral aspect of this approach has long since failed.

    Legislation supported by Bayer would protect pesticide manufacturers from lawsuits claiming their products could cause cancer if their labels otherwise comply with EPA regulations. Many US farmers rely on RoundUp®, introduced 50 years ago, to control weeds more efficiently and reduce tillage and soil erosion.

    It appears that Bayer would prefer to invest the USD 16 billion elsewhere to mitigate the damage that is currently happening within the Company. The Company needs all available funds to reduce its high debt, which currently stands at EUR 34.5 billion. One of the most pressing issues is that Bayer risks further downgrades in its credit rating. This would make refinancing considerably more expensive in a phase of high interest rates. Lobbying in the US is one of the steps being taken to save potential funds.

    NVIDIA is creating its own future AI business. By introducing new software solutions such as 'NVIDIA NIM', the Company is opening up new opportunities for the implementation of AI in various industries. Growth in the data centre segment highlights the potential of AI in the cloud computing industry, healthcare, and automotive sectors. Through a 10:1 stock split, NVIDIA securities will be available to more employees and investors. Vidac Pharma benefits from AI in the development of innovative drugs for the treatment of cancer. With a promising drug pipeline, the Company offers innovative approaches to cancer therapy aimed at reversing malignant cells back to normal function. The development of VDA-1102 for treating actinic keratosis and cutaneous T-cell lymphoma points to potential breakthroughs. This could revolutionize the current treatment of cancer. Debt-ridden problem child Bayer continues to face myriad legal challenges related to glyphosate and the weedkiller RoundUp®. Now Bayer lobbyists are trying to change legislation to avert even greater damage - but it is not looking good for the Leverkusen-based company. Despite these efforts, Bayer urgently needs to improve its financial position and reduce its high debt levels, which could potentially affect its growth prospects. Growth seems unstoppable at NVIDIA, and Vidac convinces with its solid pipeline and solid studies. At Bayer, there may be more downside than upside. Has the bottom already been reached? If so, this would be a good entry opportunity, but the level of debt is making risk-conscious investors cautious.

    Conflict of interest

    Pursuant to §85 of the German Securities Trading Act (WpHG), we point out that Apaton Finance GmbH as well as partners, authors or employees of Apaton Finance GmbH (hereinafter referred to as "Relevant Persons") may hold shares or other financial instruments of the aforementioned companies in the future or may bet on rising or falling prices and thus a conflict of interest may arise in the future. The Relevant Persons reserve the right to buy or sell shares or other financial instruments of the Company at any time (hereinafter each a "Transaction"). Transactions may, under certain circumstances, influence the respective price of the shares or other financial instruments of the Company.

    In addition, Apaton Finance GmbH is active in the context of the preparation and publication of the reporting in paid contractual relationships.

    For this reason, there is a concrete conflict of interest.

    The above information on existing conflicts of interest applies to all types and forms of publication used by Apaton Finance GmbH for publications on companies.

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    Der Autor

    Juliane Zielonka

    Born in Bielefeld, she studied German, English and psychology. The emergence of the Internet in the early '90s led her from university to training in graphic design and marketing communications. After years of agency work in corporate branding, she switched to publishing and learned her editorial craft at Hubert Burda Media.

    About the author

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