Struggling Unum execs are ready to consider a sale, merger or any deal that comes its way
Unum $UMRX is working its way through a survival plan of sorts.
After getting hit with a trio of FDA holds in its brief public history and triggering its second pivot to a new lead drug program while laying off 60% of the staff, the troubled penny stock biotech Unum Therapeutics has hatched new plans to secure financial backing while lining up a go-forward strategy for the company.
First, Lincoln Park Capital Fund has agreed to buy up to $25 million of the long-suffering stock, as Unum directs. And the executive team — led by CEO Chuck Wilson — has put everything on the table for consideration: a sale, acquisition, merger, licensing deal, you name it. The ACTR707 program, meanwhile, is being formally wrapped up — their second failed lead program.
“We recently announced the conclusion of our Phase 1 ACTR707 programs and restructuring to prioritize our capabilities and resources towards advancing our preclinical program, BOXR1030, and BOXR platform aimed at discovering novel ‘bolt-on’ transgenes to help T cells survive longer and perform better in the solid tumor microenvironment,” said Wilson in a prepared statement. “While taking steps internally to advance BOXR1030 and the BOXR platform given the broad potential we see to improve cell therapies in solid tumors, we are also taking steps to evaluate external opportunities as well and in this context, and with alignment from our Board of Directors, we are also actively seeking strategic alternatives to maximize shareholder value, including a sale or merger of the Company at this time.”
Wedbush’s David Nierengarten says he’s encouraged to see the company’s shift into survival mode.
While UMRX has secured a stock purchase agreement for up to $25M of its common stock over a 36-month period with Lincoln Park Capital Fund, the company’s share price has mostly traded below $1 since mid-November and meaningful data readouts are out of most investors’ time windows.
Ladenburg Thalmann has been brought in to advise the biotech.