Head-To-Head Comparison: STAAR Surgical (STAA) and SPY (XSPY)

STAAR Surgical (NASDAQ:STAA) and SPY (OTCMKTS:XSPY) are both small-cap medical companies, but which is the better business? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their profitability, risk, dividends, institutional ownership, analyst recommendations, earnings and valuation.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

80.3% of STAAR Surgical shares are owned by institutional investors. 3.9% of STAAR Surgical shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 70.4% of SPY shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares STAAR Surgical and SPY’s gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
STAAR Surgical $90.61 million 24.47 -$2.13 million $0.01 5,025.00

SPY has lower revenue, but higher earnings than STAAR Surgical.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of current ratings and target prices for STAAR Surgical and SPY, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
STAAR Surgical 0 0 4 0 3.00
SPY 0 0 0 0 N/A

STAAR Surgical currently has a consensus target price of $43.33, indicating a potential downside of 13.76%. Given STAAR Surgical’s higher possible upside, equities analysts clearly believe STAAR Surgical is more favorable than SPY.

Volatility & Risk

STAAR Surgical has a beta of 2.05, indicating that its share price is 105% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, SPY has a beta of -3.94, indicating that its share price is 494% less volatile than the S&P 500.


This table compares STAAR Surgical and SPY’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
STAAR Surgical 3.17% 14.80% 10.15%


STAAR Surgical beats SPY on 8 of the 9 factors compared between the two stocks.

STAAR Surgical Company Profile

STAAR Surgical Company, together with its subsidiaries, designs, develops, manufactures, markets, and sells implantable lenses for the eye, and delivery systems to deliver the lenses into the eye. The company provides Visian implantable collamer lenses (ICLs) to treat visual disorders, such as myopia, hyperopia, astigmatism, and presbyopia; and Hyperopic ICL, which treats far-sightedness. It also offers minimally invasive intraocular lenses (IOLs), including foldable IOLs for use in minimally invasive cataract surgical procedures; aspheric IOLs that produce a clearer image than traditional spherical lenses; and nanoFLEX IOL, a single piece collamer aspheric optic, as well as preloaded injectors for use in cataract surgery. In addition, the company sells injector parts, and other related instruments and devices. It markets its products to health care providers, including ophthalmic surgeons, vision centers, surgical centers, hospitals, government facilities, and distributors primarily under the STAAR, EVO Visian ICL, Evolution in Visual Freedom, Visian, Collamer, CentraFLOW, AquaPORT, nanoFLEX, nanoPOINT, and Afinity trademarks. The company sells products directly through its sales representatives in the United States, Japan, Spain, Germany, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Singapore, as well as through independent distributors in approximately 75 countries. STAAR Surgical Company was founded in 1982 and is headquartered in Monrovia, California.

SPY Company Profile

SPY Inc., through its subsidiaries, designs, produces, and distributes sunglasses, goggles, prescription frames, and branded apparel and accessories for the action sports, snow sports, and lifestyle markets. The company offers various product categories, including Happy Lens, fashion sunglasses, women-specific sunglasses, performance sport sunglasses, unisex prescription eyewear frames, snow sport goggles, and motocross goggles. It also provides a selection of accessory lens replacement kits for motocross, performance sports, and snow sports; and branded apparel and accessories, such as Tee-shirts, hooded sweatshirts, cycling apparel, hats, head sets, speakers, and other electronic accessories. The company markets its products under the SPY and Spy Optic brands. It sells its products directly to retail locations in North America; through distributors in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, the Asia Pacific, Central America, and South America; and directly to consumers primarily through its ecommerce Website, spyoptic.com, as well as through various other online channels. The company was formerly known as Orange 21 Inc. and changed its name to SPY Inc. in February 2012. SPY Inc. was founded in 1992 and is headquartered in Carlsbad, California.

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