Meridian Bioscience (NASDAQ: VIVO) and Inogen (NASDAQ:INGN) are both small-cap healthcare companies, but which is the better stock? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their profitability, dividends, valuation, risk, institutional ownership, analyst recommendations and earnings.

Dividends

Meridian Bioscience pays an annual dividend of $0.50 per share and has a dividend yield of 3.6%. Inogen does not pay a dividend. Meridian Bioscience pays out 98.0% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future.

Risk and Volatility

Meridian Bioscience has a beta of 0.89, meaning that its share price is 11% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Inogen has a beta of 1.01, meaning that its share price is 1% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

87.3% of Meridian Bioscience shares are held by institutional investors. 2.3% of Meridian Bioscience shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 5.3% of Inogen shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares Meridian Bioscience and Inogen’s top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Meridian Bioscience $198.07 million 2.97 $52.80 million $0.51 27.35
Inogen $221.89 million 8.95 $36.52 million $1.06 90.38

Meridian Bioscience has higher revenue, but lower earnings than Inogen. Meridian Bioscience is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Inogen, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of current ratings and price targets for Meridian Bioscience and Inogen, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Meridian Bioscience 1 3 0 0 1.75
Inogen 0 2 1 1 2.75

Meridian Bioscience presently has a consensus price target of $14.33, suggesting a potential upside of 2.75%. Inogen has a consensus price target of $91.00, suggesting a potential downside of 5.01%. Given Meridian Bioscience’s higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Meridian Bioscience is more favorable than Inogen.

Profitability

This table compares Meridian Bioscience and Inogen’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Meridian Bioscience 0.48% 0.57% 0.39%
Inogen 13.00% 16.70% 13.97%

Summary

Inogen beats Meridian Bioscience on 13 of the 17 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Meridian Bioscience

Meridian Bioscience, Inc. is a life science company engaged in the development, manufacture, sale and distribution of diagnostic test kits for gastrointestinal, viral, respiratory and parasitic infectious diseases, and elevated blood lead levels, and the manufacture and distribution of bulk antigens, antibodies, polymerase chain reaction (PCR)/quantitative PCR (qPCR) reagents, nucleotides, competent cells and bioresearch reagents used by researchers and other diagnostic manufacturers. Its segments include Diagnostics and Life Science. The Diagnostics segment includes manufacturing operations in Cincinnati, and the sale and distribution of diagnostic test kits in the countries consisting of North, Central and South America; Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), and other countries outside of the Americas and EMEA. The Life Science segment consists of manufacturing operations in Memphis, Tennessee; Boca Raton, Florida; London, England; Luckenwalde, Germany, and Sydney, Australia.

About Inogen

Inogen, Inc. is a medical technology company. The Company develops, manufactures and markets portable oxygen concentrators used to deliver supplemental long-term oxygen therapy to patients suffering from chronic respiratory conditions. The Company’s Inogen One systems concentrate the air around the patient to offer a single source of supplemental oxygen anytime, anywhere with a portable device. Its three portable product offerings, the Inogen One G4, Inogen One G3 and Inogen One G2, at approximately 2.8, 4.8 and 7.0 pounds with a single battery, respectively. Its Inogen One G4, Inogen One G3 and Inogen One G2 are sub-3, sub-5 and sub-10 pound portable oxygen concentrators, respectively. All of its Inogen One systems are equipped with Intelligent Delivery Technology. The Inogen At Home stationary oxygen concentrator allows it to access the non-ambulatory oxygen patient market and serves as a backup to its Inogen One system for ambulatory patients on its rental service.

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