GlobeImmune Cuts Size of Pending IPO by 29 Percent

5/22/14Follow @MichaelXBD

History might be repeating itself for GlobeImmune, a Colorado-based drug development company that once again appears to be having trouble finding investors for its IPO.

GlobeImmune is planning an IPO that is expected to price soon. It is the second time the Louisville, CO-based company, which is developing drugs for pancreatic cancer and hepatitis, has attempted to go public. GlobeImmune first tried in 2012, but pulled the offering in October 2013.

On Wednesday, GlobeImmune filed an amended prospectus with the SEC saying the company is cutting the number of shares it aims to sell in the offering from 2,187,500 to 1,562,500, a 29 percent downsizing.

GlobeImmune still intends to price the offering between $15 to $17 per share, meaning it now expects to generate almost $10 million less than before. At the $15 to $17 per share range, GlobeImmune would raise between $23.4 million and $26.6 million. When GlobeImmune set its price range in April, it was hoping for anywhere from $32.8 million to $37.2 million.

All of those numbers pale in comparison to the $75 million GlobeImmune was looking to raise in the aborted 2012 offering.

If GlobeImmune is struggling to find investors willing to ante up, it’s not alone. There have been a number of disappointing or withdrawn biotech IPOs recently, indicating that the 2013 boom in IPOs for the industry might be over.

Should GlobeImmune get its deal done, the company would trade on the NASDAQ under the symbol “GBIM.” It is expected to price its offering next week, according to IPO research firm Renaissance Capital.

GlobeImmune was founded in 1995 and is developing potential cancer and infectious disease treatments that are designed to work by stimulating T cells to seek out and attack certain specific, infected cells.

The company has drug development partnerships in place with Foster City, CA-based Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ: GILD) and Summit, N.J.-based Celgene (NASDAQ: CELG). Through its deal with GlobeImmune, Gilead grabbed rights to an experimental chronic hepatitis B drug, GS-4774, that is in a mid-stage clinical trial. Celgene, meanwhile, is working on possible cancer treatments with the Colorado company. The most advanced drug candidate to come out of that so far, GI-6207, is in a Phase 2 study as well. According to the company’s IPO prospectus, those partnerships have brought GlobeImmune $60 million.

Celgene owns a 12.8 percent stake in GlobeImmune, and other major investors include HealthCare Ventures (11.3 percent stake) and Morgenthaler Partners (11.4 percent). According to the filing, they and other investors have indicated an interest in purchasing an aggregate of up to $10 million shares of common stock at the IPO price.

Aegis Capital Corp. is underwriting the offering.

Michael Davidson is the editor of Xconomy Boulder/Denver. He covers startups, venture capital, clean tech, energy, aerospace, telecoms, and whatever else happens above 5,280 feet. Contact him at mdavidson@xconomy.com. Follow @MichaelXBD

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