A stumble on the way Forward
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A stumble on the way Forward

18.10.2014 - After raising US$220.5m (€172m) with its IPO, fast Forward Pharma’s lucky streak hits an obstacle on the road to success with shares falling 17% on its first day of trading.

Forward Pharma’s IPO was one of the largest biotech IPOs in more than ten years. The Danish biopharma company raised a total of US$220.5m with an IPO on NASDAQ this month from the sale of 10.5 million American Depositary Shares (ADSs) at $21 – an increase of one million shares from its original plan. In August, it filed to raise US$200m (€156) in an IPO, and in October announced its offering of 9.5 million ADSs at of US$20-22 (€16-€17). However, on the first day of trading, the share price fell to US$17.50 (€14) – a decrease of 17%.

The biotech company focuses on drug development for the treatment of immune diseases. Its lead drug candidate is FP187, a patented controlled release tablet based on the small molecule dimethylfumarate (DMF) to potentially treat immune disorders such as multiple sclerosis (MS) and psoriasis. DMF is thought to interact with T cells and dendritic cells in the gut inducing an anti-inflammatory cellular and cytokine profile. Additionally, the non-immunosuppressive compound is said to have cytoprotective effects.

Among other things, Forward Pharma plans to use the money to begin Phase III trials of FP187 in relapsing-remitting MS by the end of the year. Next year the company plans to start Phase III trials of the compound for the treatment to severe plaque psoriasis. If the phase III trials are completed, the price of the ADSs should go up considerably. 



17.10.2014 Abandoned at the altar: Abbvie has dropped plans to acquire UK’s Shire following new US tax rules. This puts a stop to one of the biggest pharma mergers planned this year.


15.10.2014 Bicycle Therapeutics wins €25m backing by major pharma venture capitalists for the development of a new class of oncology drugs.


13.10.2014 Biotechnology IPOs are back in fashion – German Probiodrug AG wants to raise €32m with its IPO, whilst Swiss Molecular Partners AG hopes the launch of its IPO will gain a revenue of €145m.


10.10.2014 Actavis has announced plans to merge with American pharma company Durata - a move that will strengthen their infectious diseases portfolio.


07.10.2014 In an unprecedented move, the European Medicines Agency has approved a system allowing the future analysis of clinical trial data.


06.10.2014 Another fund from the Netherlands has raised €92m in its first close and will invest the money in companies developing innovative therapeutics, medical devices and diagnostics.


03.10.2014 Dutch venture capitalist LSP has achieved its monetary milestone by raising €80m for its fifth fund - with a goal of €150m.


02.10.2014 New EU commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker is on the defensive after members of Parliament and NGOs criticised his reorganisation of the health technology units.


30.09.2014 In the face of the Ebola outbreak sweeping the West African countries, the EMA has started to review investigational treatments for the deadly virus disease.

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No liability assumed, Date: 20.10.2014