5 Stocks to Watch Out for Amid the Omicron Outbreak

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05 Jan, 2022

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Keep a watch on these stocks once the new Omicron version appears. Read on to know more!

According to preliminary research, this new Omicron version is both faster and more contagious than the Delta type. Furthermore, existing vaccines may be less effective against the new variety, albeit this has not been scientifically proven. The new variation has injected uncertainty just as India was recuperating from the effects of the second wave. GDP statistics for the July-September quarter of the fiscal year 2022 was released just last week, showing an increase of 8.4%. After two quarters of contraction last year, this is the fourth straight quarter of positive growth.

Analysts anticipate that India will retain its position as the world's fastest growing economy until the financial year 2023, assuming all limitations are repealed and growth continues to accelerate. However, as a result of the additional strain, the government may be obliged to reinstate the limits if things spiral out of hand. Due to reduced activity, all of the core industries may be impacted, resulting in slower growth. However, there are a few industries that are more resistant to another closure.

Stocks to watch:

  • Cipla

Cipla is a multinational pharmaceutical corporation with operations in over 80 countries and 46 manufacturing facilities that produce over 1,500 medicines. Generics and pharmaceuticals in important therapeutic categories make up its product portfolio. Cipla is one of India's leading pharmaceutical firms, as well as the country's largest supplier to emerging countries.

It released seven medications as part of its Covid-19 line during the pandemic. Drugs, sanitisers, and antigen and antibody testing kits are among them. Despite the pandemic, it formed a number of agreements to commercialize cancer, biosimilars, and metabolic disorders products.

Cipla's revenue increased by 12% year on year in the fiscal year 2021, owing to respiratory unlocking in the United States and their Covid portfolio. Cipla's earnings before interest, taxes, and depreciation margin increased by more than 350 basis points to 22.5 percent from 18.9 percent over the same period. Margin expansion was aided by lower expenses as a result of cost-cutting initiatives and reduced on-ground operations as a result of lockdown.

  • Dr. Lal Pathlabs

Dr Lal Pathlabs is one of India's leading diagnostic chains. It has 3,705 locations that offer over 5,000 diagnostic tests, associated healthcare tests, and services. During the pandemic, the business increased its digital and physical reach in order to improve testing. Despite the pandemic, the corporation expanded in the fiscal year 2021, adding 15 labs, 600 collection centres, and 2,200 pickup points.

Dr Lal Pathlabs' revenue increased by 18.9% in the fiscal year 2021, compared to 10.6% rise in the fiscal year 2020. The increase in revenue was fueled by a resurgence in non-Covid revenue. For the fiscal year 2021, the EBITDA margin was 29.3 percent, compared to 27.5 percent the previous year. Increased expenditures in logistics and information and technology infrastructure resulted in modest margin growth.

Despite higher costs, the company's net profit increased by 30.3 percent year over year. The net profit margin increased to 18.8 percent from 17.1 percent the prior year. Because there are so many unorganized competitors in the diagnostic industry, organized firms like Dr Lal Pathlabs have a better chance of gaining a significant market share.

  • Alkem Laboratories

In terms of market share, Alkem Laboratories is the sixth largest pharmaceutical firm in India. It has 20 production and R&D sites in India and the United States. It also exports to over 40 different countries. There are over 800 brands in the company's product portfolio. Twelve of these brands have yearly sales in excess of $1 billion.

The company's activities were hampered slightly during the lockdown. During the unlocking phase, though, it recovered quickly. Alkem Labs revenues increased by 6.2 percent in the fiscal year 2021, compared to 13.4 percent the previous year. The company's expansion was slowed by a reduction in acute treatment prescription medicine sales in India. However, their overseas business was the main driver of revenue growth.

For the fiscal year 2021, the EBITDA margin is 21.9 percent. The margin increased from 17.72 percent the year before. The increase in margins is primarily attributable to fewer marketing and travel expenses as a result of the lockdown.

  • Thyrocare Technologies

Thyrocare is a pan-India diagnostic chain with over 279 tests and 79 test profiles to diagnose a wide range of illnesses. It runs its centralized processing laboratory 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to meet the needs of its customers. To ensure quick processing, the corporation also has regional processing laboratories in major cities.

Thyrocare operates a pan-India collecting network, which is backed up by a logistics network and IT infrastructure. The corporation built zonal processing laboratories for testing and other sophisticated tests during the pandemic. However, due to the lockdown, some of the company's collection centres were forced to close completely.

  • Morepen Labs

Morepen Labs is a pharmaceutical firm based in India that produces APIs, generic and branded formulations, as well as home health and diagnostic devices. Its goods are exported to more than 80 countries, and it is the market leader in the production of certain APIs.

The company's sales increased by 39.6% in the fiscal year 2021, compared to 11.7 percent the previous year. Diagnostics and API revenue grew at a faster rate than the rest of the company. In the current fiscal year, the corporation kept its expenses at the same level as the previous year. This resulted in a 67 percent increase in EBITDA year over year and a 1.9 percent increase in EBITDA margin.

The company's net profit increased by 189 percent year over year, compared to a 16 percent increase the prior year. In the fiscal year 2020, the net profit margin was 8%, compared to 4% in the previous year. Despite the pandemic, the company's varied product portfolio has allowed it to grow revenues. It intends to expand its activities at the same time in order to take advantage of the increased demand for improved healthcare.

Wrapping Up

The healthcare and diagnostic industries are just two of several that are anticipated to withstand another shutdown. Of course, there could be a short-term impact if fears grow and businesses must adjust their plans to deal with them. FMCG, packaging, and eCommerce industries may all be able to weather the storm.

The pandemic has altered the way businesses operate. If you want to invest right now, look for companies that can take advantage of economic shifts to boost their long-term growth potential. Make no rash moves or attempt to time the market. Instead, once short-term volatility subsides, seek to stay involved for a longer time horizon. In a nutshell, Omicron is nothing to be terrified of. If things deteriorate, you will have a fantastic opportunity to invest in equities.

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