Coronavirus, absence of rules cause CV Sciences to ‘right-size’ as Q1 sales suffer

Amid the coronavirus pandemic, CV Sciences, a hemp CBD manufacturer based in San Diego, reported revenue of $8.3 million for the first quarter ended March 31, down 45% from the same period a year ago.

For the first three months of the 2020 fiscal year, sales were $8.2 million, down 45% from the prior year.

The company reported a loss of 5 cents a share and an operating loss of $5.3 million in the first quarter of 2020, down from a loss of $9.4 million the prior year.

CV Sciences CEO Joseph Dowling blamed the results on increased market competition, the uncertain regulatory environment for CBD and the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, despite increasing its retail store count to 5,799 stores nationwide, up from 3,308 stores in March 2019.

With $8.3 million in revenue for the first quarter, Dowling said with the company exceeded the high end of its first-quarter revenue projections, which was projected at the end of 2019 to be $6 million to $8 million due to continued market pressure from competitors.

“Over the past months, we have taken quick action to right-size our operations for the near-term industry outlook and to adapt our operations for the ever-changing operating environment created by the current global health crisis,” Dowling said.

Pivoting to a heavy e-commerce sales strategy due to COVID-19, the company reported that e-commerce sales accounted for 24% of total net revenue, up from 15% from the same period in 2019, attributing the launch of its updated +PlusCBD Oil website in January for driving increased e-commerce sales.

CV Sciences’ pharmaceutical development business also received notice of allowance for a patent from the U.S. Patent and Trade Office for the company’s CBD and nicotine formulation aimed at treating smokeless tobacco addiction.

At the end of 2019, the company said it would reduce operating expenses by delaying development of its pharmaceutical products and curtailing expansion.

Last week, the company came under pressure for receiving a Paycheck Protection Program loan from the Small Business Administration, despite being a publicly traded company.

CV Sciences continues to pursue a listing on the Nasdaq, but for now trades on over-the-counter markets under the ticker symbol CVSI.

CV Sciences’ latest earnings report is available here.