Head-To-Head Contrast: Coherent (COHR) vs. Harvard Bioscience (NASDAQ:HBIO)

Coherent (NASDAQ: COHR) and Harvard Bioscience (NASDAQ:HBIO) are both computer and technology companies, but which is the better stock? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their dividends, analyst recommendations, valuation, earnings, risk, institutional ownership and profitability.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

98.4% of Coherent shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 64.6% of Harvard Bioscience shares are owned by institutional investors. 1.0% of Coherent shares are owned by company insiders. Comparatively, 7.6% of Harvard Bioscience shares are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, large money managers and endowments believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Risk and Volatility

Coherent has a beta of 0.97, suggesting that its share price is 3% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Harvard Bioscience has a beta of 1.21, suggesting that its share price is 21% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Earnings & Valuation

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

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Coherent $1.72 billion 2.18 $207.12 million $12.57 12.02
Harvard Bioscience $101.88 million 1.89 -$860,000.00 $0.05 107.00

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

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and recommmendations for Coherent and Harvard Bioscience, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Coherent 0 0 9 0 3.00
Harvard Bioscience 0 0 2 0 3.00

Coherent currently has a consensus target price of $268.38, indicating a potential upside of 77.65%. Harvard Bioscience has a consensus target price of $9.00, indicating a potential upside of 68.22%. Given Coherent’s higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe Coherent is more favorable than Harvard Bioscience.


This table compares Coherent and Harvard Bioscience’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Coherent 12.65% 29.28% 14.97%
Harvard Bioscience -3.70% 2.79% 1.75%


Coherent beats Harvard Bioscience on 10 of the 13 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Coherent

Coherent, Inc. provides lasers and laser-based technology in a range of scientific, commercial, and industrial applications worldwide. It operates through two segments, Specialty Lasers and Systems, and Commercial Lasers and Components. The company designs, manufactures, services, and markets lasers, laser tools, precision optics, and related accessories. Its products are used in markets, such as microelectronics, materials processing, original equipment manufacturer components and instrumentation, and scientific research and government programs. The company markets its products through a direct sales force in the United States, as well as through direct sales personnel and independent representatives internationally. Coherent Inc. was founded in 1966 and is headquartered in Santa Clara, California.

About Harvard Bioscience

Harvard Bioscience, Inc. develops, manufactures, and markets scientific instruments, systems, and lab consumables used in life science basic research, drug discovery, and clinical and environmental testing. The company offers physiology, cell, and molecular instruments, such as traditional syringe pump and peristaltic pump products, as well as a range of instruments and accessories for tissue, organ, and animal based lab research under the Harvard Apparatus, CMA Microdialysis, Panlab, Coulbourn, and Hugo Sachs brands; and spectrophotometers, microplate readers, amino acid analyzers, gel electrophoresis equipment, and electroporation instruments that are marketed under the Biochrom, Libra, WPA, BioDrop, Hoefer, Scie-plas, and BTX brand names. It also designs, develops, and manufactures precision electrophysiology equipment specializing in patch clamp amplifiers, and manual and automated patch clamp systems under the HEKA brand; manufactures tools for electrophysiology and cell biology research consisting of cell chambers, perfusion controllers, temperature controllers, microincubation systems, and bio-sensing systems under the Warner Instruments brand; and designs and develops in vivo neural interface systems under the TBSI brand for neuroscience research, primarily in the fields of electrophysiology, psychology, neurology, and pharmacology. In addition, the company is involved in the development and manufacture of precision scientific measuring instrumentation and equipment under the Multi-Channel Systems brand; and physiologic monitoring focused on delivering preclinical products, systems, services, and solutions. Harvard Bioscience, Inc. markets its products in approximately 100 countries through sales organization, Websites, catalogs, and distributors to research scientists at universities, hospitals, government laboratories, and pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. The company was founded in 1901 and is headquartered in Holliston, Massachusetts.

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