Kezar and Xeris file for IPOs, joining May’s march to the public markets

Adding to the flurry of IPOs before May wraps up, two more biotechs filed intentions Thursday to go public: San Francisco’s Kezar Life Sciences hopes to raise $80.5 million, while Chicago’s Xeris Pharmaceuticals is shooting for $75 million.

Both companies plan to list on the Nasdaq, joining about a dozen other biotechs that have trotted out to the public markets this month. Just yesterday, we saw Magenta Therapeutics, Kiniksa, Scholar Rock, and Aptinyx all file or wrap IPOs.

Kezar, which will list under the ticker $KZR, has plans to use the IPO money to push forward its pipeline of autoimmune drugs. Spun out of Amgen with small molecules from the plate of the former Onyx Pharmaceuticals, Kezar’s lead product is KZR-616. The drug is a selective immunoproteasome inhibitor that’s about to be tested in a Phase Ib/II trial in lupus and lupus nephritis.

The IPO might also fuel KZR-616 for the treatment of idiopathic inflammatory myopathies and up to three additional autoimmune indications into Phase Ib or Phase II clinical trials, according to the company’s S-1.

For Xeris, the IPO move comes a couple months after closing a $55 million crossover round. The company plans to use the money for the commercial roll out of its lead product, a glucagon pen for diabetics. Proceeds will also go toward Xeris’ pipeline, which uses the company’s glucagon for conditions that require administration over a longer period of time, including post-bariatric hypoglycemia and congenital hyperinsulinism, among other indications.

Xeris plans to list under the ticker $XERS.

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Research Scientist - Immunology
Recursion Pharmaceuticals Salt Lake City, UT
Director of Operations
Atlas Venture Cambridge, MA

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