Three more companies price IPOs, bringing this year's raise up to $11.78B
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The biotech IPO rush continues, as three more companies — Nuvalent, Icosavax and Rallybio — priced their public debuts on Wednesday and Thursday. So far, 92 companies have priced or filed for IPOs this year, raising a massive $11.78 billion and surpassing last year’s count of 91 public debuts.
Here’s what you need to know about the latest companies jumping onto the Nasdaq:
Nuvalent hits Wall Street six months post-launch
Deerfield-backed Nuvalent emerged from stealth just six months ago, and it’s celebrating its half-birthday with its very own stock ticker.
The targeted therapy startup priced an upsized $166 million IPO on Thursday, offering 9.8 million shares at $17 apiece, the midpoint of a $16 to $18 range. Much of that ($60 million to $65 million, according to the S-1/A) will be used to launch the company’s first-in-human trial later this year for NLV-520, which is billed as a highly selective ROS1 inhibitor.
Nuvalent first set out to solve a problem that occurs in targeted cancer therapies, where mutations tend to arise and thwart the therapies from accomplishing their missions. But Harvard professor Matt Shair, who founded Nuvalent, believes chemistry can evolve fast enough to keep up with the diseases, he told Endpoints News in January.
The company plans on launching a Phase I/II trial for NLV-520 in non-small cell lung cancer and other advanced solid tumors in the second half of this year. Another $55 million to $60 million is tagged for the company’s second lead candidate, an ALK inhibitor, which is headed for the clinic in the first half of 2022, the S-1/A states. And $45 to $50 million will be set aside for discovery programs, including ones targeting ALK, IXDN and HER2 Exon 20 insertions.
Nuvalent filed its S-1 papers earlier this month, penciling in a $100 million raise — though many companies in the last year and a half have gone on to raise much more than those initial estimates.
Deerfield, which helped launch the company with a $50 million Series A back in January, will still own just over 51% of shares after the offering. Meanwhile, Shair holds a 5.23% piece of the pie.
Nuvalent will trade under the ticker $NUVL.
Icosavax kicks off public debut with $182M raise
Icosavax scored a big goal with its soccer ball-shaped virus-like particles on Wednesday, pricing an upsized $182 million IPO.
The Seattle-based company, which had initially penciled in a $100 million raise, ended up offering just over 12.1 million shares at $15 apiece. A vast majority of the funds ($120 million) are going straight to IVX-A12, a combination vaccine candidate targeting both respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and human metapneumovirus (hMPV), for which there are currently no approved vaccines. Icosavax plans on filing an IND for that program in the first half of 2022.
Icosavax’s tech originated in Neil King’s lab at the University of Washington, where researchers built on years-old research of how some viral proteins could spontaneously assemble themselves. That resulted in a virus-like particle shaped like a soccer ball — the “white” parts making up the structure and the “black” spots representing the displayed antigens, King told Endpoints back in April.
King’s using that same tech to develop a “super-seasonal” flu vaccine with the NIH, though Icosavax isn’t involved in that.
The company was originally working on a vaccine for just RSV, dubbed IVX-121, which is entering a clinical trial in Belgium later this year, with topline data expected in the first half of next year. It’s also working on two Covid-19 vaccine candidates, IVX-411 and IVX-421. The former entered a Phase I/II trial in Australia last month, with proof-of-concept data coming in the first half of 2022.
RA Capital Management, Qiming, Adams Street Partners, Aventis and NanoDimension will each own between 7% and 10% after the offering, while CEO Adam Simpson has a 2.2% stake.
Icosavax will trade under the ticker $ICVX.
Rallybio prices IPO at the low end of its range, raising slightly less than expected
After reading out proof-of-concept data for its lead program earlier this month, Martin Mackay’s Rallybio has priced its public offering at the low end of a $13 to $15 range, reeling in just a bit less than it had penciled in on its S-1.
Mackay founded Rallybio back in 2018, after spending 30 years at Big Pharmas and big biotechs like Alexion. Along with Stephen Uden and Jeff Fryer — two other Alexion castaways — Mackay set out to launch a new company with a focus on rare diseases.
On Wednesday, the company offered 6.2 million shares at $13 apiece, raising $80.6 million despite initially shooting for a $100 million raise, according to an S-1 filed earlier this month. A majority of the IPO funds — between $75 million and $83 million — are tagged for the company’s lead program for FNAIT, or fetal and neonatal alloimmune thrombocytopenia.
FNAIT is a rare condition in which a fetus has antigens on platelet cells that a mother lacks, leading the mother’s body to mount an immune response that can potentially cause fetal brain bleeding.
Rallybio’s preventative candidate, RLYB211 candidate, is designed to give mothers a polyclonal anti-HPA-1a antibody in the hopes of tamping down that immune response. Earlier this month, the company released proof-of-concept data from an ongoing Phase I/II study that suggested the candidate can “rapidly and completely clear” HPA-1a positive platelets from those without natural antigen defense.
Another $35.0 million to $41.0 million is slated for the company’s complement program, including completion of a Phase I trial for RLYB116 in paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria (PNH), a rare blood disease, and generalized myasthenia gravis (gMG), a neuromuscular disease.
Rallybio will list under the ticker $RLYB.