Nicox : the most important fund raising from a start-up on the French Riviera

Posté lun 11/06/2001 - 00:00
Par admin

In order to finance research and development, the biotech company has launched from May 9th to 21st a capital increase worth 64 million euros on the New Market!

It is the most important fund raising never incurred by a start-up from the French Riviera. The Nicox company, set up in 1998, whose head office is located in Sophia Antipolis, has launched from May 9th to 21st, a deal of capital increase on the Euronext Paris New Market worth 64 million euros (about 400 million francs). Nicox, emerging pharmaceutical company, uses the properties of the nitric oxide which were recently discovered, in order to increase the efficiency and reduce the side effects of drugs already known.A new research centre in MilanThe net proceeds of this capital increase will finance enormous research and development costs in the health sector. Thus, according to Nicox, the first products won’t be put on the market before 2004. Hence the necessity of this market call. The money collected should allow the company to continue the development of its compounds, included in some cases, until the completion of Phase II clinical trials before searching license agreements.It will also allow Nicox to increase its research activities, in particular with the opening of a new research centre in Milan. This centre will be dedicated to discover and to test new compounds included second generation nitro compounds.An exit for initial investorsAs another biotech company, Transgène, Nicox chose the means of a capital increase. It will be done by the issue of a million new shares at maximum (between 850,000 and a million shares), which will raise the number of shares on the market at 16.5% (a bit more than 7 million shares in the case of the issue of one million new shares). The net proceeds of the offer for the company is estimated at 63.94 million euros after deduction of proceeds and expenses of the offer, supposing an assumed price of the offer per share of 68.10 euros (closing quotation of May 3rd 2001) and an issue of 1,000 000 shares.The leader of the deal is SG Cowen. The Crédit Agricole Indosuez Lazard et Casenove intervene as co-leaders. It will be a global offer including a private international investment directed to institutional investors and a public offer in France. Some existing shareholders (Apax, Sofinnova, and other funds of venture capital) plan to proceed at the same time to the transfer of 150,000 existing shares. It is a good exit for these capital venturers, the Nicox share being multiplied by 3.5 since its listing on the New Market in October 1999.

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