Sector Spotlight: Medical Waste Management (VKIN, SRCL, QRHC, WM)

The Global Medical Waste Management Market is valued at USD 6.5 Billion in 2021 and is projected to reach USD 8.8 Billion by the year 2028. Over the forecast period, the global medical waste management market is anticipated to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.2%.

Medical waste is the garbage generated in healthcare facilities as a result of treatment and surgical procedures. Clinics, hospitals, and diagnostic institutions produce waste that must be managed and disposed of properly. Medical waste management ensures the correct collection, treatment, storage, and disposal of biomedical waste in order to protect the environment and general public.

The demand for medical waste management is strong, and will continue to be strong as a result of a few factors such as: *The rapidly growing population – more people simply means more medical waste is generated year after year *Increase in the prevalence of diseases such as COVID-19 *The growing global healthcare infrastructure – the ability to treat more patients results in a larger amount of medical waste generated

The World Health Organization states that better care and diligence are needed to manage healthcare waste in order to prevent harmful effects on human health and the environment.

According to the WHO, protecting the wellbeing of workers and emphasizing environmental sustainability are essential components of improving the management of medical waste.

In this article, we will be discussing a few companies that make great plays to benefit from the growing medical waste management sector.

Viking Energy Group Inc. (OTC: VKIN) is a growth-oriented, diversified energy company that is majority-owned by Camber Energy Inc. Viking provides customized energy and power solutions to commercial and industrial clients in North America and owns oil and natural gas assets in the United States through its majority-owned subsidiaries. In addition, the company has an exclusive license in Canada for a patented carbon capture system.

VKIN offers its revolutionary VKIN-6000, an ozone-based waste treatment system, through its majority-owned subsidiary, Viking Ozone Technology, LLC. VKIN can provide an environmentally sustainable and cost-effective solution by combining their technology with the use of ozone.

Incineration, chemical treatment, autoclaves, and heat treatments are examples of current medical and biohazardous waste management solutions that VKIN hopes to replace. Each of these current methods has a number of disadvantages. These methods for treating medical waste are typically hazardous to workers, involve the combustion of toxic and pungent gases, and result in the release of hazardous chemicals into the environment.

The VKIN-6000 eliminates the need to heat medical waste during treatment. As a result, VKIN’s solution drastically reduces the energy used throughout the process, which in turn reduces costs, conserves resources, and eliminates the release of greenhouse gases. This results in a cheaper process that is safer and more environmentally friendly.

Recently, VKIN received a Notice of Allowance from the United States Patent & Trademark Office (“USPTO”) for patent application No. 17/576,801 titled “Multi-Chamber Medical Waste Ozone-Based Treatment Systems and Methods”. A Notice of Allowance means that the USPTO has made the determination that a patent will be granted from an application. This indicates that a patent for their game-changing medical waste technology should be granted within the next few months.

Keep VKIN on your radar for stocks that will benefit from the increase demand for medical waste management solutions

Stericycle (Nasdaq: SRCL) is a U.S.-based business-to-business services company. Stericycle serves customers worldwide with solutions for regulated waste and compliance services. They’re one of the larger players in waste management, with a bulk of their waste being medical in nature.

Recently, Stericycle disclosed its recent Q3 financial performance, in which SRCL’s Q3 2022 normalized EPS surged by 48% YoY to $0.65 in Q3 2022, 12% above the sell-side analysts’ consensus forecast. Favorable pricing and improved operating efficiency were major drivers behind SRCL’s earnings for the recent quarter.

Quest Resource Holding Corporation (NASDAQ: QRHC) is a national provider of waste and recycling services that enable larger businesses to excel in achieving their environmental and sustainability goals and responsibilities. Quest helps national customers meet internally mandated and/or externally regulated ESG goals, and achieve meaningful landfill diversion.

Recently, Quest Resource came out with a quarterly loss of $0.09 per share versus the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of $0.03. This compares to earnings of $0.02 per share a year ago.

A quarter ago, it was expected that this recycling company would post a loss of $0.09 per share when it actually produced earnings of $0.05, delivering a surprise of 155.56%. Over the last four quarters, the company has surpassed consensus EPS estimates three times.

While they may have had a tough Q3, look to the company to finish 2023 strong.

Waste Management (NYSE: WM) – Headquartered in Houston, Texas, Waste Management Inc. is a leading provider of comprehensive waste management services in North America. WM offers a full range of medical waste disposal services, including advanced autoclave treatment and technologies for all types of medical waste.

While it may not be the most exciting stock, WM offers investors a stable play with steady returns, oftentimes even in tumultuous markets. Four analysts revised their earnings estimate upward in the last 60 days for fiscal 2022. The Zacks Consensus Estimate has increased from $0 to $5.70 per share. WM boasts an average earnings surprise of 6.5%.

With a solid Zacks Rank and top-tier Value and VGM Style Scores, WM should be on investors’ short list.

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