Langer-backed Kala scores $90M IPO as it lines up a pair of NDAs

Bob Langer, Credit: Chemical Heritage Foundation, CC BY-SA 3.0

Kala Pharmaceuticals has now joined the ranks of this year’s biotech IPO class, hitting the range and raising $90 million after pricing shares at $15.

Marck Iwicki, Kala CEO

That cash will now help fund the final leg of two Phase III studies for two different doses of KPI-121 and the first round of commercialization work that the biotech hopes lies ahead. Their lead drug is being studied for inflammation and pain following ocular surgery as well as the temporary relief of the signs and symptoms of dry eye disease.

Back in early 2016 MIT professor Bob Langer told me that Kala had moved through preclinical work and into late-stage testing in just three years, a major accomplishment for the company. The group, which was inspired by work done by Langer and some of his students at MIT, can now add a successful IPO as they plan an NDA before the end of this year. One of Langer’s former students, Hongming Chen, is the CSO at Kala. Mark Iwicki is CEO.

Hongming Chen, Kala CSO

The Waltham, MA-based biotech will trade as $KALA. The biotech raised $68 million in early 2016 from Longitude Capital, OrbiMed, Vivo Capital, CAM Capital, RA Capital Management, Wellington Management Company LLP, Polaris Partners, and Lux Capital.

J.P. Morgan, BofA Merrill Lynch and Wells Fargo Securities are acting as joint bookrunners for the offering. Wedbush PacGrow is acting as a co-manager for the offering.

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