Reviewing Vical (NASDAQ:VICL) and Surface Oncology (NASDAQ:SURF)

Vical (NASDAQ:VICL) and Surface Oncology (NASDAQ:SURF) are both small-cap medical companies, but which is the better business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their risk, institutional ownership, valuation, dividends, analyst recommendations, profitability and earnings.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of current recommendations and price targets for Vical and Surface Oncology, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Vical 0 2 0 0 2.00
Surface Oncology 0 0 2 0 3.00

Vical currently has a consensus price target of $4.00, suggesting a potential upside of 426.18%. Surface Oncology has a consensus price target of $23.00, suggesting a potential upside of 771.21%. Given Surface Oncology’s stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, analysts clearly believe Surface Oncology is more favorable than Vical.

Profitability

This table compares Vical and Surface Oncology’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Vical -1,002.10% -32.59% -30.61%
Surface Oncology -148.15% -38.97% -22.92%

Risk and Volatility

Vical has a beta of 0.28, suggesting that its share price is 72% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Surface Oncology has a beta of 2.4, suggesting that its share price is 140% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Vical and Surface Oncology’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Vical $1.62 million 10.71 -$16.25 million ($0.81) -0.94
Surface Oncology $59.42 million 1.24 -$6.60 million ($0.33) -8.00

Surface Oncology has higher revenue and earnings than Vical. Surface Oncology is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Vical, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

33.8% of Vical shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 59.0% of Surface Oncology shares are held by institutional investors. 4.6% of Vical shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 33.0% of Surface Oncology shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Summary

Surface Oncology beats Vical on 11 of the 14 factors compared between the two stocks.

Vical Company Profile

Vical Incorporated researches and develops biopharmaceutical products based on its DNA delivery technologies for the prevention and treatment of serious or life-threatening diseases. The company was founded in 1987 and is headquartered in San Diego, California.

Surface Oncology Company Profile

Surface Oncology, Inc., a clinical-stage immuno-oncology company, engages in the development of cancer therapies. The company develops human immunoglobulin isotype G4 monoclonal antibodies, including SRF231 inhibiting CD47; NZV930 inhibiting CD73; SRF617 inhibiting CD39; and SRF388 targeting interleukin 27. It also develops various earlier stage programs that targets other critical components of the tumor microenvironment, including regulatory T cells and natural killer cells. The company has a strategic collaboration agreement with Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research, Inc. for the development of cancer therapies. Surface Oncology, Inc. was founded in 2014 and is headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

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