Cathie Wooden known as this one among her most underappreciated shares. Its CEO explains its progress story


Shares of Invitae rose over 25% this week, a pointy transfer greater that got here after Ark Make investments’s Cathie Wooden known as the corporate one of her most underappreciated stocks in a CNBC interview on Monday.

Invitae was the Eleventh-largest holding in Wooden’s flagship fund, the Ark Innovation ETF (ARKK), as of Thursday, giving it a weighting bigger than better-known firms reminiscent of DocuSign and PayPal.

The intently watched investor and her agency are recognized for his or her technique of investing round “disruptive innovation,” and a powerful efficiency final yr has precipitated billions of recent {dollars} to circulate into Ark’s household of funds.

In a CNBC interview Friday, the CEO of Invitae defined the genetic-testing firm’s mission and long-term targets, providing perception into why Wooden is bullish on its prospects.

“Genetic info is of basic significance in bettering individuals’s health-care outcomes and reducing prices, and we’re relentlessly pursuing the thought of getting that info into mainstream medical care, on a regular basis use,” Sean George mentioned on “Closing Bell.” He co-founded the San Francisco-based agency in 2010, and it went public in 2015.

Invitae reported full-year revenues of $279.6 million in 2020, up from $216.8 million within the prior yr. Its web loss widened $608.9 million final yr, in contrast with $242 million in 2019.

Whereas genetic info is usually a highly effective device in combating numerous maladies, George mentioned excessive prices have traditionally restricted its availability and, by extension, the affect it may have. Nonetheless, he mentioned, current gene-sequencing improvements have laid the groundwork for extra accessibility. He likened it to semiconductor enhancements serving to kickstart the computing and networking trade in the 1970s and early ’80s.

“That has enabled … utility suppliers like us … to alter what has basically been up to now a rationed good in well being care — genetic info, form of in a distinct segment, test-by-test, sample-by-sample lab trade arrange — to one thing that appears way more like an info trade,” George mentioned.

George, who has a Ph.D. in molecular genetics, mentioned Invitae hopes to get its checks to the purpose the place sufferers and medical doctors can use them proactively in giant numbers. That manner, even when the price of every check is cheaper, Invitae may have the size to generate sufficient working money to thrive as an organization, he mentioned.

“The large significance and central significance of genetic info in well being care is about to — I am sure within the subsequent 5 to 10 years — is about to come back entrance and heart as a capability to get the correct remedy earlier to people that may profit, establish individuals in danger, and put in place monitoring and prevention modalities to actually delay, if not even stop, the onset of illness and customarily present a core understanding of threat that runs in households,” he added.

Ark Make investments has positions in a variety of firms engaged on medical innovation past Invitae. Wooden’s agency has an ETF devoted to it, known as the Genomic Revolution ETF (ARKG). As of Thursday, it consists of Teladoc, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals and CRISPR Therapeutics. Invitae is also in that fund, at present as its sixteenth greatest holding.

Shares of Invitae closed Friday’s session down 0.5% at $42.70. Regardless of the inventory’s huge features this week, it stays under its all-time excessive of $61.59, on Dec. 14. It has rallied nearly 260% up to now 12 months.