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15 April, 2020 - 09:36 By Tony Quested

Illumina Q1 revenue rise defies virus threat

US sequencing giant Illumina, Inc, which is growing its Cambridge UK research hub at Grants Park, has defied the odds to increase its first quarter 2020 revenues.

Subject to quarter-end closing adjustments, the San Diego-based company expects to report first quarter revenue of approximately $858 million, compared to $846 million in the first quarter of 2019. 

This is no California dreaming! Strong sequencing consumable revenue more than offset the impact of COVID-19 – including disrupted system sales in the closing weeks of the quarter.

The business has warned, however, that visibility going forward is clouded to say the least and has felt it prudent to withdraw guidance for the whole of 2020 until the picture re COVID-19 becomes clearer.

Illumina has also reiterated its commitment to helping the life science community and world governments find solutions to the pandemic as a matter of priority.

Francis deSouza, President and CEO, said: ““Our priority in the midst of this global pandemic is the safety of our employees, partners and customers. We are also committed to ensuring continuity of supply for our customers, many of whom are performing critical clinical testing for patients. 

“We share the commitment of the scientific community to do everything we can to fight COVID-19 and are supporting researchers using sequencing to track transmission, study the evolution of the virus’ genome and how it could impact the effectiveness of diagnostics and therapies, or explore how surveillance could be adopted to reduce the impact of future outbreaks of new infectious diseases.”

Sam Samad, Illumina’s chief financial officer, added: “While our preliminary first quarter results were strong overall, we expect the second quarter to be significantly impacted by COVID-19 related disruption. 

“We are confident that this is a temporary disruption that in no way alters the long-term trajectory of sequencing adoption and demand. That said, it is not possible at this time to forecast the severity and duration of this outbreak. As a result, we believe it is prudent at this time to withdraw our 2020 revenue and earnings per share guidance.”

• Image courtesy – Illumina

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