Illumina (ILMN) vs. Zeltiq Aesthetics (ZLTQ) Critical Comparison

Illumina (NASDAQ: ILMN) and Zeltiq Aesthetics (NASDAQ:ZLTQ) are both medical companies, but which is the better business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their dividends, institutional ownership, profitability, earnings, analyst recommendations, valuation and risk.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

93.3% of Illumina shares are owned by institutional investors. 1.6% of Illumina shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 15.6% of Zeltiq Aesthetics shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of current ratings and recommmendations for Illumina and Zeltiq Aesthetics, as provided by

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Illumina 2 8 9 0 2.37
Zeltiq Aesthetics 0 8 2 0 2.20

Illumina presently has a consensus price target of $175.32, suggesting a potential downside of 17.39%. Zeltiq Aesthetics has a consensus price target of $55.63, suggesting a potential downside of 1.51%. Given Zeltiq Aesthetics’ higher probable upside, analysts clearly believe Zeltiq Aesthetics is more favorable than Illumina.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Illumina and Zeltiq Aesthetics’ gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Illumina $2.49 billion 12.44 $666.78 million $5.10 41.62
Zeltiq Aesthetics N/A N/A N/A $0.74 76.32

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


This table compares Illumina and Zeltiq Aesthetics’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Illumina 30.27% 19.69% 10.81%
Zeltiq Aesthetics 9.78% 31.74% 20.11%

Risk and Volatility

Illumina has a beta of 0.81, suggesting that its stock price is 19% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Zeltiq Aesthetics has a beta of 1.01, suggesting that its stock price is 1% more volatile than the S&P 500.


Illumina beats Zeltiq Aesthetics on 6 of the 11 factors compared between the two stocks.

Illumina Company Profile

Illumina, Inc. (Illumina) is a provider of sequencing- and array-based solutions for genetic analysis. The Company operates through two segments: Core Illumina and the consolidated variable interest entities (VIEs), which include the activities of GRAIL, Inc. (GRAIL) and Helix Holdings I, LLC (Helix). Core Illumina consists of its core operations. Core Illumina’s products and services serve customers in the research, clinical and applied markets, and enable the adoption of a range of genomic solutions. The Company’s portfolio of integrated systems, consumables and analysis tools addresses the range of genomic complexity, price points, and throughput, enabling customers to select the solution for their research or clinical challenge. The Company provides reproductive-health solutions, including noninvasive prenatal testing (NIPT), preimplantation genetic screening and diagnosis, and neonatal and genetic health testing.

Zeltiq Aesthetics Company Profile

ZELTIQ Aesthetics, Inc. is a medical technology company. The Company focuses on developing and commercializing products utilizing its controlled-cooling technology platform. The Company’s product, the CoolSculpting System, is designed to reduce stubborn fat bulges. The Company sells its CoolSculpting system primarily to dermatologists, plastic surgeons, aesthetic specialists and obstetrics and gynecology (OBGYN) physicians. It also offers consumables, which are CoolSculpting procedure packs that are needed to perform procedures using its CoolSculpting system. CoolSculpting is a non-invasive fat reduction procedure. CoolSculpting utilizes its controlled cooling technology to selectively reduce stubborn fat bulges. The CoolSculpting system includes CoolSculpting control unit and CoolSculpting applicators. The CoolSculpting Applicator delivers vacuum suction and cooling to the fat bulge being treated.

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