eHealth technology developer and maker of the wheezo device, Respiri (ASX: RSH) has published interim revenue guidance for 2021 with total revenues from both device and software subscription estimated to reach $6-$8 million.
Wheezo is a modernised wheeze monitoring device and forms part of a broader asthma management ecosystem, including a breath sensor, a digital health platform and a mobile app.
Respiri chief executive officer Marjan Mikel said: “In discussion with our partners it has been apparent that respiratory disease patients such as asthmatics have a heightened level of awareness in effectively managing their disease and in particular the potential for more serious adverse events from COVID-19 infections.”
To arrive at its forward-looking guidance, Mr Mikel explained that Respiri’s board which also includes executive chairman Nicholas Smedley and Dr Thomas Duthy, considered several factors, including the “resilience of the pharmacy channel” from disruption during the COVID-19 pandemic in Australia, citing its status as an essential service as the reason for strong demand.
Additionally, the recent exclusive pharmacy sales, distribution and logistics agreement with Indian multinational pharmaceutical company Cipla and its active account management of 4,000 pharmacies and strong commercial relationships with the major pharmacy banner groups and chains were also expected to be significant contributors to revenue growth.
“Equally, general practice and other physician management of patients with asthma will continue during these difficult times as we are witnessing with the recruitment of Health Care Practitioners to participate in the wheezo Patient Experiential Program (PEP), which is still moving ahead as planned,” said Mr Mikel.
“We look forward to updating our investors throughout the year on our progress in achieving these revenue goals, noting our guidance is predicated on the maintenance of Australian pharmacy operations and supply throughout the pandemic,” he added.
Path to commercialisation
Respiri shares have marching higher since mid-May following a string of positive announcements including a timely $5 million capital raise, delivering over 500 wheezo units to customers and launching its patient-doctor experience program.
Respiri is also planning on launching a 2.0 version of its wheezo app before moving onto “full-scale manufacturing” and obtaining FDA clearance towards the end of the year.
According to scientific research, having the “correct diagnosis, regular preventers, correct medication and an asthma management plan” are the keys to managing respiratory health.
Respiri intends to capitalise by delivering access to technology that can improve health outcomes and says its wheezo device encourages and motivate people with asthma to self-manage their condition by improving patient education and “empowering them to take control of their asthma”.
Furthermore, in an address to shareholders in May, Mr Mikel said Respiri was in “advanced discussions” with the local subsidiary of a second multinational pharmaceutical company to position its asthma management tool as an accepted part of asthma management to physicians.
Mr Mikel said he intends to steer Respiri onto a “pathway to commercialisation” by accelerating and optimising its pharmacy partnership program and boosting its e-commerce efforts through point-of-sale option upgrades to patients.
In June, Respiri announced a definitive service agreement with The Pharmacy Guild of Australia, the national body representing over 5,700 community pharmacies across the country and followed up two weeks later with an agreement to partner with the University of Edinburgh in a new data research centre called BREATHE (Health Data Research Hub for Respiratory Health is led by the University of Edinburgh’s Professor Aziz Sheikh) to help improve the lives of people living with respiratory conditions.