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August 1, 2000 at 12:00 AM EDT

Quidel's Second Quarter Sales Increase 60%

SAN DIEGO, Aug. 1 /PRNewswire/ -- Quidel Corporation (Nasdaq: QDEL) today announced its expanded line of diagnostic testing products generated strong sales for the second quarter and first half of 2000. Second quarter product sales were up 60% and first half of 2000 sales increased 64%. Gross margin increased to 51% of sales for both the second quarter and year-to-date. Growth in sales of Quidel's' core diagnostic products, as well as contributions from acquired products, generated strong top-line growth in the seasonally weak second quarter.

Product sales increased to $17.0 million for the second quarter, compared to $10.6 million in the like quarter a year ago. For the first six months of 2000, product sales grew to $39.0 million, compared to $23.9 million in the first six months of 1999. Gross profit grew to $8.6 million in 2Q00 and $20.0 million in the first half of 2000, compared to $5.2 million and $11.3 million in the like periods of 1999.

"With our move to around-the-clock manufacturing, we've worked through much of the backlog of orders for core products that built up following the supply shortage that developed late last year," said Andre de Bruin, vice chairman, president and chief executive officer. Product sales and gross margins were also boosted by new products launched or acquired during the last twelve months including the osteoporosis diagnostic products acquired in June 1999, and the urinalysis products sold throughout Europe, acquired in December 1999.

"The launch of the urinalysis products under our QuickVue brand in the United States is slated for this summer and provides an entry into a significant market segment for us," de Bruin said. "We believe this product line will be well received by healthcare professionals and expect it to begin contributing to sales and profits later this year."

"This quarter marks the third consecutive quarter we've achieved gross margins above 50%, and it further demonstrates the success of the product line acquisitions and efforts to improve productivity implemented during the year," said Charles Cashion, senior vice president and chief financial officer.

Second quarter operating income grew to $379,000, compared to an operating loss of $131,000 in 2Q99. For the first half of 2000, operating income increased to $2.4 million compared to an operating loss of $284,000 in the first half a year ago. Operating expenses increased due to the two major acquisitions completed last year, expenses related to new product introductions, the deployment of a flex sales force to support the launch of the QuickVue influenza product line, and other business development initiatives.

"Other income and expenses shifted significantly reflecting the increased interest expenses created from the company's acquisitions, the sale/leaseback of its manufacturing and R&D building, the decline in research revenues earned through development partnerships for products being launched or nearing completion, and foreign currency exchange rates," said Cashion. Pre-tax profit in the second quarter was to $148,000, or $.01 per share, compared to $808,000, or $.03 per share, in the like period a year ago. Year-to-date, pre-tax profit increased 26% to $2.1 million, or $.08 per share, compared to $1.6 million or $.07 per share in the first half of 1999.

Net income for the second quarter was $89,000, or $.00 per share, compared to $485,000, or $.02 per share, in the second quarter of 1999. In the first half of the year, net income totaled $1.2 million, or $.05 per share, which is not directly comparable to year ago results. In the first half of last year, the company booked a non-cash net tax benefit of $6.3 million boosting net income to $7.9 million, or $0.33 per diluted share. On a fully taxed basis assuming a 40% tax rate and excluding the tax credit, first half 1999 results would have been $988,000, or $.04 per share.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) was $2.0 million, or $.07 per fully diluted share in 2Q00 compared to $1.8 million, or $.07 per share, in the year ago quarter. For the first half of 2000, EBITDA was $5.9 million, or $.22 per diluted share, compared to $3.6 million, or $.15 per diluted share, in the first half of 1999.

The balance sheet remains strong with a 43% increase in current assets over the past twelve months and a 14% increase since December 31, 1999. The company's current ratio stands at 2.6:1 at June 30, 2000. With positive cash flow from operations, we are continuing to fund growth through internal cash generation and have reduced short term debt to $1.5 million, a reduction of more than $2 million this year," "said Cashion.

Quidel is a market leader in point-of-care, rapid diagnostics, providing simple, accurate and cost-effective diagnostic tests to physicians and/or consumers. QDEL's Test and Treat products are easy to use and provide results in minutes facilitating rapid treatment and improve health outcomes, lower costs, and increase patient satisfaction. Its core products address issues relating to a woman's health throughout her life including reproductive status, pregnancy management and osteoporosis. In addition, the Company provides diagnostic products for all family members for common health problems and infectious diseases, including influenza A and B, strep throat, H. pylori infection, chlamydia and infectious mononucleosis. Quidel's products are sold to healthcare professionals for use in physicians' offices, clinical laboratories, pharmacies, and wellness screening centers. Quidel also manufactures a line of products sold to consumers through organizations that provide store branded products.

           CONFERENCE CALL TODAY, August 1st, at 1:45 p.m. Pacific
                             (4:45 p.m. Eastern)

              Visit http://www.streetevents.com to listen to the call.

Contact Sharon Platt at 858-552-7955 or Becky Reid at 206-448-1996 for dial-in and replay information.

This press release contains forward-looking statements regarding Quidel's future activities within the meaning of the federal securities laws. These forward-looking statements involve material risks and uncertainties. Many possible factors could affect the future results' such that actual results and performance may differ materially. If Quidel's products fail to perform as expected, or if there is lower consumer demand than expected, Quidel's financial condition and operating results may be materially and adversely affected. Quidel's financial condition and operating results may also be materially and adversely affected by a number of other factors, including, without limitation, the company's ability to fund operations through internal cash flow or external financing, adverse changes in competitive and economic conditions, currency fluctuations, actions by the Company's distributors, manufacturing and production delays or difficulties and adverse actions or delays in product reviews by the FDA. Please see the discussion of these and other factors in Quidel's annual reports on Form 10-K and subsequent quarterly reports on Form 10-Q. For more information, please visit Quidel's web site at http://www.quidel.com.

    ($000's, except per share)        Three Months Ended   Six Months Ended
    (unaudited)                            June 30,            June 30,
                                        2000      1999      2000      1999

    Net sales                         $16,964   $10,600   $39,032   $23,870
    Cost of sales                       8,331     5,435    19,022    12,535
    Gross profit                        8,633     5,165    20,010    11,335

    Sales and marketing                 4,395     2,655     9,143     5,490
    Research and development            1,638     1,584     3,771     3,510
    General and administrative          2,221     1,057     4,720     2,619
    Total costs and expenses            8,254     5,296    17,634    11,619
    Operating income                      379      (131)    2,376      (284)

    Research contracts, licenses
     and royalties                        325       972       639     1,980
    Interest/Other income (expense)      (548)       97      (589)      265
    Foreign exchange gain (loss)           (8)     (130)     (358)     (315)
    Total other income (expense)         (231)      939      (308)    1,930

    Income before taxes                   148       808     2,068     1,646
    Provision for taxes                   (59)     (323)     (827)    6,252
    Net income                            $89      $485    $1,241    $7,898

    Net earnings per share
     - basic                            $0.00     $0.02     $0.05     $0.33
    Net earnings per share
     - diluted                          $0.00     $0.02     $0.05     $0.33

    Pre-Tax Earnings per share
     - basic                            $0.01     $0.03     $0.08     $0.07
    Pre-Tax Earnings per share
     - diluted                          $0.01     $0.03     $0.08     $0.07

    EBITDA                             $1,976    $1,805    $5,930    $3,567
    EBITDA per share (basic)            $0.08     $0.07     $0.24     $0.15
    EBITDA per share (diluted)          $0.07     $0.07     $0.22     $0.15

    Shares used in basic per
     share calculation                 24,638    23,822    24,518    23,814
    Shares used in diluted per
     share calculation                 26,636    23,856    26,517    23,836

    Gross profit as a % of net
     sales                                51%       49%       51%       47%
    Sales & marketing as a % of
     net sales                            26%       25%       23%       23%
    R & D as a % of net sales             10%       15%       10%       15%
    G & A as a % of net sales             13%       10%       12%       11%

                                      6/30/00  12/31/99   6/30/99
    Cash and cash equivalents          $5,917    $4,672    $8,135
    Working capital                   $17,958   $12,483   $16,756
    Total assets                      $69,859   $68,040   $61,232
    Long-term obligations             $11,300   $11,429   $16,756
    Stockholders' equity              $47,625   $43,755   $45,191
    Common shares outstanding          24,671    24,029    23,822

SOURCE  Quidel Corporation

Andre de Bruin, Chief Executive Officer, 858-646-8018,
or Sharon Platt, 858-552-7952, both of Quidel Corporation