Canaccord cuts Vermillion to hold; PT to $1

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Canaccord Genuity downgraded Vermillion (NASDAQ:VRML) to “hold” from “buy” and lowered its price target to $1 from $2.25 after the company’s first quarter results missed estimates across the board. The stock closed at $1.04 on May 23.

Vermillion is a women's health diagnostics company, focused initially in ovarian cancer risk assessment.

Analyst Mark Massaro writes that Vermillion also appears to be taking a very measured approach to building out its sales force, even after its recent financing, adding four new reps for a total of nine, and expects to stay at around that level this year. “We think a lot more are needed to stimulate demand,” he added.

“We could look to get more constructive on the stock as we wait to see if Vermillion can drive greater physician ordering of OVA-1, based on a more robust go-to-market strategy, winning major commercial payer coverage decisions and contracts, and showing sustainable volume growth,” Mr. Massaro said.