May 12, 2022

Gelesis Reports First Quarter 2022 Results

Plenity product revenue increased 142% year-over-year to $7.5 million in the quarter, driven by the debut of the national media campaign in February 2022

Q1 2022 gross margin increased 277% year-over-year

Company reiterates guidance of $58M in projected product revenue for 2022

BOSTON, MAY 12, 2022 – Gelesis (NYSE: GLS), the maker of Plenity for weight management, today reported financial results for the first quarter of 2022.

“We saw all-time highs of people seeking and starting Plenity prescriptions. It’s no surprise: we offer a proven, nature-inspired, and FDA-cleared therapy that has the potential to help over 150 million people in the United States whose needs are largely unmet by existing therapies on the market. Based on the results of the first quarter, we are encouraged that our message is resonating with the right people,” said Yishai Zohar, Founder and CEO of Gelesis. “We are committed to delivering an accessible and affordable new option for weight loss. We were pleased with the immediate reception from the first wave of our broad media awareness campaign and we look forward to continuing to help many more people achieve their weight loss goals.”

Gelesis CFO Elliot Maltz commented, “This quarter we focused on beginning to build broad consumer awareness of Plenity. Our strong performance across February and March, which accounted for more than 80% of our revenue this quarter, demonstrates the effectiveness of our marketing efforts and the tremendous potential for this product. We were pleased by the improvement in our gross margin this quarter that resulted from completing the first phase of our commercial manufacturing scale-up last year. We believe this is just the beginning and it could take 4-plus years to reach peak market share in the United States. We are targeting a consumer acquisition cost of less than $100 at the point when there is broad awareness of Plenity.  We intend to focus our business plan on creating strong consumer awareness of our product.”

Key Business Metrics

First Quarter 2022 Results

A reconciliation of Adjusted EBITDA, a non-GAAP financial measure, to net loss, its most comparable financial measure under generally accepted accounting principles in the United States (“U.S. GAAP”), is included in the tables accompanying this press release.  See “Non-GAAP Financial Measures” for additional important information regarding Adjusted EBITDA.

Recent Business Highlights

Gelesis launched the first wave of its national broad awareness media campaign for Plenity on January 31, which was subsequently associated with its record high levels of web traffic and prescription requests.

Based on data from the first quarter 2022 and the first wave of the media campaign, the company shares the following findings about these new members.

Financial Outlook for Fiscal Year 2022

Based on current market conditions, results of the first quarter of 2022, and expectations for the remainder of the year, Gelesis estimates product revenue, net, of about $58 million in 2022. This is contingent on the timing and amount of future anticipated financing, in addition to the company’s current expectations regarding the amount and timing of investments in broad awareness media, which could be impacted by available liquidity and other considerations as it monitors the rate of growth in new Plenity members and units sold during upcoming quarters.

The guidance provided above constitutes forward-looking statements which are subject to uncertainty. Actual results may differ materially and we cannot anticipate the effect of changes in marketing investment on our results from operations. Refer to the “Forward-Looking Statements” safe harbor section below for information on the factors that could cause our actual results to differ materially from these forward-looking statements.

Q1 2022 Conference Call and Webcast Information

Gelesis management will host a conference call today at 4:30 pm ET to discuss the first quarter 2021 results, followed by a question-and-answer period. The conference call can be accessed by dialing +1 (844) 200-6205 for U.S. participants and +1 (929) 526-1599 for all other participants. The conference ID is 726898.

A live webcast will also be available here, or on the company’s investor relations website at A replay of the webcast will be available shortly afterwards.

About Gelesis

Gelesis Holdings Inc. (NYSE: GLS) (“Gelesis”) is a consumer-centered biotherapeutics company and the maker of Plenity®, which is inspired by nature and FDA cleared to aid in weight management. Our first-of-their-kind non-systemic superabsorbent hydrogels are made entirely from naturally derived building blocks. They are inspired by the composition and mechanical properties of raw vegetables, taken by capsule, and act locally in the digestive system, so people feel satisfied with smaller portions. Our portfolio includes Plenity® and potential therapies in development for patients with Type 2 Diabetes, Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD)/Non-alcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH), and Functional Constipation. For more information, visit, or connect with us on Twitter @GelesisInc.

Plenity® is indicated to aid weight management in adults with excess weight or obesity, a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 25–40 kg/m², when used in conjunction with diet and exercise.

Important Safety Information about Plenity

Rx Only. For the safe and proper use of Plenity or more information, talk to a healthcare professional, read the Patient Instructions for Use, or call 1-844-PLENITY.

Forward-Looking Statements

Certain statements, estimates, targets and projections in this press release may constitute “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the federal securities laws. The words “anticipate,” “believe,” continue,” “could,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend,” “may,” “might,” “plan,” “possible,” “potential,” “predict,” “project,” “should,” “strive,” “would” and similar expressions may identify forward-looking statements, but the absence of these words does not mean that statement is not forward looking. Forward-looking statements are predictions, projections and other statements about future events that are based on current expectations and assumptions and, as a result, are subject to risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements regarding our or our management team’s expectations, hopes, beliefs, intentions or strategies regarding the future, including those relating to Gelesis’ business combination with Capstar Special Purpose Acquisition Corp. (“Capstar”) and its expected benefits, Gelesis’ performance following the business combination, the competitive environment in which Gelesis operates, the expected future operating and financial performance and market opportunities of Gelesis and statements regarding Gelesis’ expectations, hopes, beliefs, intentions or strategies regarding the future. In addition, any statements that refer to projections, forecasts, or other characterizations of future events or circumstances, including any underlying assumptions, are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made. Readers are cautioned not to put undue reliance on forward-looking statements, and Gelesis assumes no obligation and does not intend to update or revise these forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise. Gelesis gives no assurance that any expectations set forth in this press release will be achieved. Various risks and uncertainties (some of which are beyond our control) or other factors could cause actual future results, performance or events to differ materially from those described herein. Some of the factors that may impact future results and performance may include, without limitation: (i) the size, demand and growth potential of the markets for Plenity® and Gelesis’ other product candidates and Gelesis’ ability to serve those markets; (ii) the degree of market acceptance and adoption of Gelesis’ products; (iii) Gelesis’ ability to develop innovative products and compete with other companies engaged in the weight loss industry; (iv) Gelesis’ ability to finance and complete successfully the commercial launch of Plenity® and its growth plans, including new possible indications and the clinical data from ongoing and future studies about liver and other diseases; (v) failure to realize the anticipated benefits of the business combination, including as a result of a delay or difficulty in integrating the businesses of Capstar and Gelesis; (vi) the ability of Gelesis to issue equity or equity-linked securities or obtain debt financing in the future; (vii) the outcome of any legal proceedings instituted against Capstar, Gelesis, or others in connection with the business combination; (viii) the ability of Gelesis to maintain its listing on the New York Stock Exchange; (ix) the risk that the business combination disrupts current plans and operations of Gelesis as a result of Gelesis being a publicly listed issuer; (x) the regulatory pathway for Gelesis’ products and responses from regulators, including the FDA and similar regulators outside of the United States; (xi) the ability of Gelesis to grow and manage growth profitably, maintain relationships with customers and suppliers and retain Gelesis’ management and key employees; (xii) costs related to the business combination, including costs associated with the Gelesis being a publicly listed issuer; (xiii) changes in applicable laws or regulations; (xiv) the possibility that Gelesis may be adversely affected by other economic, business, regulatory and/or competitive factors; (xv) Gelesis’ estimates of expenses and profitability; (xvi) ongoing regulatory requirements, (xvii) any competing products or technologies that may emerge, (xviii) the volatility of the telehealth market in general, or insufficient patient demand; (xix) the ability of Gelesis to defend its intellectual property and satisfy regulatory requirements; (xx) the impact of the COVID 19 pandemic on Gelesis’ business; (xxi) the limited operating history of Gelesis; (xxii) the potential impact of inflation on our operating expenses and costs of goods; and (xxiii) other important factors discussed in the “Risk Factors” section of Gelesis’ most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K, and in other filings that Gelesis makes with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These filings address other important risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results and events to differ materially from those contained in the forward-looking statements.


Gelesis assumes no obligation and does not intend to update or revise the results provided in this press release. The results provided in this press release represent past performance and are not necessarily predictive of future results.

Key Business Metrics

We monitor the following key metrics to help us evaluate our business, identify trends affecting our business, formulate business plans and make strategic decisions. We believe the following metrics are useful in evaluating our business:

New members acquired

We define new members acquired as the number of consumers in the United States who have begun their weight loss journey with Plenity during the financial period presented. This is the total number of recurring and non-recurring consumers who have begun their weight loss journey during the financial period presented. We do not differentiate from recurring and non-recurring consumers as of this date as (i) we strongly believe every member’s weight-loss journey is chronic and long-term in nature, and (ii)  we have not initiated our long-term strategy and mechanisms to retain and/or win-back members. We will continue to evaluate the utility of this business metric in future periods.

Units sold

Units sold is defined as the number of 28-day supply units of Plenity sold to consumers based on prescriptions, through our strategic partnerships with online pharmacies and telehealth providers as well as the units sold to our strategic partners outside the United States. Note that the terms “units” and “monthly kits”, as mentioned in Gelesis’ various public disclosures and filings, are synonymous when used to describe the sales volume of Plenity.

Product revenue, net

We recognize product revenue in accordance with Accounting Standards Codification Topic 606, Revenue from Contracts with Customers, when we transfer promised goods or services to customers in an amount that reflects the consideration to which the entity expects to be entitled in exchange for those goods or services.

Our product revenue is derived from product sales of Plenity, net of estimates of variable consideration for which reserves are established for expected product returns, shipping charges to end-users, pharmacy dispensing and platform fees, merchant and processing fees, and promotional discounts offered to end-users.

Average selling price per unit, net

Average selling price per unit, net is the gross price per unit sold during the period net of estimates of per unit variable consideration for which reserves are established for expected product returns, shipping charges to end-users, pharmacy dispensing and platform fees, merchant and processing fees, and promotional discounts offered to end-users.

Gross profit and gross margin

Our gross profit represents product revenue, net, less our total cost of goods sold, and our gross margin is our gross profit expressed as a percentage of our product revenue, net. Our gross profit and gross margin have been and will continue to be affected by a number of factors, including the prices we charge for our product, the costs we incur from our vendors for certain components of our cost of goods sold, the mix of channel sales in a period, and our ability to sell our inventory.

Non-GAAP Financial Measures

In addition to our financial results determined in accordance with GAAP, we believe that Adjusted EBITDA, a non-GAAP measure, is useful in evaluating our operating performance. We define “Adjusted EBITDA” as net (loss) income before depreciation and amortization expenses, provision for (benefit from) income taxes, interest expense, net, stock-based compensation and (gains) and losses related to changes in fair value of our warrant liability, our convertible promissory note liability, our tranche rights liability and the One S.r.l. call option. We use Adjusted EBITDA to evaluate our ongoing operations and for internal planning and forecasting purposes because it facilitates internal comparisons of our historical operating performance. We believe that this non-GAAP financial measure, when taken together with the corresponding GAAP financial measure, net loss, provides meaningful supplemental information regarding our performance by excluding certain items that may not be indicative of our business, results of operations, or outlook. We consider Adjusted EBITDA to be an important measure because it helps illustrate underlying trends in our business and our historical operating performance on a more consistent basis. We believe that Adjusted EBITDA is helpful to our investors as it is a metric used by management in assessing the health of our business and our operating performance.

However, non-GAAP financial information is presented for supplemental informational purposes only, has limitations as an analytical tool and should not be considered in isolation or as a substitute for financial information presented in accordance with GAAP. In addition, other companies, including companies in our industry, may calculate similarly-titled non-GAAP financial measures differently or may use other measures to evaluate their performance, all of which could reduce the usefulness of Adjusted EBITDA as a tool for comparison. A reconciliation is provided below for Adjusted EBITDA to the most directly comparable financial measure stated in accordance with GAAP. Investors are encouraged to review the related GAAP financial measure and the reconciliation of this non-GAAP financial measure to its most directly comparable GAAP financial measure, and not to rely on any single financial measure to evaluate our business.


Media & Investor Relations

Katie Sullivan

Source: Gelesis Holdings, Inc.