AstraZeneca-backed Entasis Therapeutics joins the IPO class of 2018 with a weak debut price
Entasis Therapeutics has made it to Nasdaq.
The antibiotics group — a spinout from AstraZeneca — had a disappointing debut, pricing shares at $15 apiece, below the range set between $16 to $18. But the biotech was able to raise $75 million after upsizing the number of shares on offer to 5 million.
The Waltham, MA-based company is run by a group of survivors from an antibiotics division that once employed 175 people working for AstraZeneca. The pharma giant bowed out of early-stage antibiotics research, as others have as well, and was unable to sell the unit, as it had originally hoped. In the spinout, the pharma giant also provided a launch round to fund the work.
That lack of enthusiasm for the work may help explain Entasis’ trouble with its IPO, which initially pencilled in a target of $86 million.
Credit Suisse and BMO Capital Markets were joint book runners.
The biotech will trade as $ETTX, joining a big wave of newly public biotechs which were pitched to investors this year.