Comparing Acceleron Pharma (XLRN) and Viking Therapeutics (VKTX)

Viking Therapeutics (NASDAQ: VKTX) and Acceleron Pharma (NASDAQ:XLRN) are both healthcare companies, but which is the superior business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their dividends, risk, analyst recommendations, profitability, earnings, institutional ownership and valuation.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

19.9% of Viking Therapeutics shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 88.2% of Acceleron Pharma shares are owned by institutional investors. 8.2% of Viking Therapeutics shares are owned by company insiders. Comparatively, 3.9% of Acceleron Pharma shares are owned 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.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Viking Therapeutics and Acceleron Pharma’s top-line revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Viking Therapeutics N/A N/A -$20.57 million ($0.85) -6.59
Acceleron Pharma $13.48 million 149.03 -$108.45 million ($2.69) -16.44

Viking Therapeutics has higher earnings, but lower revenue than Acceleron Pharma. Acceleron Pharma is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Viking Therapeutics, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of recent ratings and target prices for Viking Therapeutics and Acceleron Pharma, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Viking Therapeutics 0 0 3 0 3.00
Acceleron Pharma 1 4 10 0 2.60

Viking Therapeutics currently has a consensus price target of $7.67, indicating a potential upside of 36.90%. Acceleron Pharma has a consensus price target of $47.57, indicating a potential upside of 7.55%. Given Viking Therapeutics’ stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, research analysts clearly believe Viking Therapeutics is more favorable than Acceleron Pharma.


This table compares Viking Therapeutics and Acceleron Pharma’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Viking Therapeutics N/A -276.21% -129.79%
Acceleron Pharma -804.49% -38.71% -35.91%


Viking Therapeutics beats Acceleron Pharma on 7 of the 12 factors compared between the two stocks.

Viking Therapeutics Company Profile

Viking Therapeutics, Inc. is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company. The Company focuses on the development of therapies for metabolic and endocrine disorders. The Company’s clinical program, VK5211, is an orally available drug candidate, which is in Phase II clinical trial for acute rehabilitation following non-elective hip fracture surgery. VK5211 is a non-steroidal selective androgen receptor modulator (SARM). Its second program is focused on the development of orally available small molecule thyroid hormone receptor beta agonists. Its two molecules are VK2809 and VK0214. VK2809 is an orally available, tissue and receptor-subtype selective agonist of the thyroid beta receptor that is entering Phase II development for the treatment of patients with hypercholesterolemia and fatty liver disease. It is developing VK0214 for the treatment of X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy (X-ALD). It has a pipeline with approximately three additional programs targeting metabolic diseases and anemia.

Acceleron Pharma Company Profile

Acceleron Pharma Inc. is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company. The Company is focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of therapeutics to treat serious and rare diseases. Its research focuses on key natural regulators of cellular growth and repair, particularly the Transforming Growth Factor-Beta (TGF-beta), protein superfamily. It has four internally discovered therapeutic candidates that are in clinical trials, which include luspatercept, sotatercept, dalantercept and ACE-083. It offers a platform technology, IntelliTrap. It is also evaluating ACE-1332, a selective TGF-beta antagonist, for treatment of disorders with a fibrotic component, and additional molecules from its IntelliTrap platform for undisclosed therapeutic areas. Dalantercept is designed to treat cancers by inhibiting blood vessel formation by inhibiting signaling through the ALK1 receptor. ACE-083 is designed to promote muscle growth and function in specific, targeted muscles.

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