Medicis Pharmaceutical Corp (NYSE: MRX) and Depomed (NASDAQ:DEPO) are both healthcare companies, but which is the better business? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their risk, analyst recommendations, valuation, institutional ownership, earnings, profitability and dividends.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current recommendations and price targets for Medicis Pharmaceutical Corp and Depomed, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Medicis Pharmaceutical Corp 0 0 0 0 N/A
Depomed 0 6 2 0 2.25

Depomed has a consensus target price of $10.50, indicating a potential upside of 66.67%.

Profitability

This table compares Medicis Pharmaceutical Corp and Depomed’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Medicis Pharmaceutical Corp N/A N/A N/A
Depomed -27.73% -51.07% -10.00%

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Medicis Pharmaceutical Corp and Depomed’s gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio NetIncome Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Medicis Pharmaceutical Corp N/A N/A N/A $0.67 N/A
Depomed $455.90 million 0.87 -$88.72 million ($1.83) -3.44

Medicis Pharmaceutical Corp has higher revenue, but lower earnings than Depomed. Depomed is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Medicis Pharmaceutical Corp, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

90.5% of Depomed shares are owned by institutional investors. 2.6% of Depomed shares are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

About Medicis Pharmaceutical Corp

Medicis Pharmaceutical Corporation (Medicis) together with its wholly owned subsidiaries is an independent specialty pharmaceutical company engaged in the development and marketing of products for the treatment of dermatological and aesthetic conditions in the United States and Canada. Medicis offers a range of products addressing various conditions or aesthetic improvements, including facial wrinkles. Its brands are DYSPORT (abobotulinumtoxinA) 300 Units for Injection, PERLANE Injectable Gel, RESTYLANE Injectable Gel, SOLODYN (minocycline HCl, USP) Extended Release Tablets, VANOS (fluocinonide) Cream 0.1%, ZIANA (clindamycin phosphate 1.2% and tretinoin 0.025%) Gel and ZYCLARA (imiquimod) Cream 3.75% and 2.5%. As of December 31, 2011, it offered 27 branded products. On December 2, 2011, it acquired Graceway Pharmaceuticals, LLC (Graceway). On November 1, 2011, Medicis sold Medicis Technologies Corporation, formerly LipoSonix, Inc., to Solta Medical, Inc. (Solta).

About Depomed

Depomed, Inc. is a specialty pharmaceutical company. The Company focuses on pain and other central nervous system (CNS) conditions. Its products include NUCYNTA ER (tapentadol extended release tablets), NUCYNTA IR (NUCYNTA) (tapentadol), Gralise (gabapentin), CAMBIA (diclofenac potassium for oral solution), Zipsor (diclofenac potassium) and Lazanda (fentanyl). Its NUCYNTA ER (tapentadol extended release tablets) is a product for the management of pain severe enough to require daily long term opioid treatment, including neuropathic pain associated with diabetic peripheral neuropathy in adults, and its NUCYNTA (tapentadol) is a product for the management of moderate to severe acute pain in adults. Its Gralise (gabapentin) is a once-daily product for the management of postherpetic neuralgia. Its CAMBIA (diclofenac potassium for oral solution) is a product for the acute treatment of migraine attacks.

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