Volcano Therapeutics (Rancho Cordova, California) has filed with the SEC for an initial public offering (IPO) of stock to raise up to $86 million, all of the shares to be offered by the company. The filing did not detail the number of shares to be offered or their pricing.
Founded in 2000, Volcano manufactures a suite of intravascular ultrasound (IVUS) and functional measurement (FM) products for the diagnosis and treatment of vascular and structural heart disease. The company explains in its filing: “During an IVUS procedure, an imaging catheter is placed inside an artery to produce a cross-sectional image of the size and shape of the artery's lumen and provides information concerning the composition and density of plaque or lesions and the condition of the layers of the surrounding arterial walls. Our IVUS products consist of consoles, single-procedure disposable catheters and advanced functionality options. FM devices measure the pressure and flow characteristics of blood around plaque thereby allowing physicians to gauge the plaque's impact on blood flow and pressure. Our FM products consist of pressure and flow consoles and single-procedure disposable pressure and flow guidewires.“
The company targets its marketing to hospitals performing percutaneous interventional procedures.
Volcano also is developing customized versions of its consoles “and advanced functionality options“ as part of what it calls a “vfusion cath lab integration initiative.“ The vfusion offering will include cath lab-integrated IVUS and FM capabilities, real-time Virtual Histology with color-coded identification of plaque composition, automatic real-time drawing of lumen and plaque borders, and IVUS and angiographic image synchronization, or co-registration, in two- and three-dimensions.
The company in 2005 reported revenues of $91.9 million in product sales and says that as of Feb. 28, 2006, it had a worldwide installed base of more than 1,400 IVUS consoles and more than 700 FM consoles.
The company filing says that one of its key risks is the difficulty of predicting the future growth opportunities for IVUS technology both domestically and internationally.
Volcano is sponsoring the PROSPECT study, calling it “a natural history study of plaque,“ withAdvanced Cardiovascular Systems , a unit of Guidant (Indianapolis), and says that if it fails to demonstrate a causal connection between vulnerable plaque and coronary events, this would hurt any demand for its products.
JP Morgan Securities and Piper Jaffray & Co. are the joint book-running managers for the offering. Bear, Stearns & Co. and Cowen & Co. are co-managers. The company's proposed Nasdaq symbol is VOLC.
Volcano has found an important partner inGE Healthcare (Waukesha, Wisconsin), the two companies having launched, at this year's meeting of the American College of Cardiology, an effort to combine digital cardiovascular imaging with integrated IVUS imaging capabilities (Medical Device Daily, March 14, 2006).
In other financing activity:
• China Medical Technologies (Beijing), a company that manufactures high intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) products and in vitro diagnostic systems, reported a secondary offering of 5 million American depositary shares (ADSs), each representing 10 ordinary shares, at a price to the public of $25.50 per ADS.
Golden Meditech (BVI), General Electric International Operations Company and Chengxuan International are selling 2.2 million ADSs, 1.8 million ADSs and 1 million ADSs, respectively. The company will not receive any proceeds from the sale of ADSs by these selling shareholders.
In addition, Chengxuan International, Neon Liberty Capital Management and Golden Meditech have granted to the underwriters an option to purchase up to another 750,000 ADSs from them within 30 days from the date of the prospectus.
China Medical manufactures products in China using HIFU for the treatment of solid cancers and benign tumors. It says it believes it is a leader in the development of HIFU tumor therapy devices in China. In addition, it says it is the first China-based company to offer an advanced in vitro diagnostics system using enhanced chemiluminescence technology to detect various diseases and disorders through laboratory evaluation and analysis of blood, urine or other body fluids.
• Southridge Capital Management, a registered investment adviser providing investment capital to global public issuers, reported an equity financing facility of up to $15 million between the funds it advises and Imaging Diagnostic Systems (IDSI; Plantation, Florida).
IDSI has developed an imaging device to aid in the detection and management of breast cancer. The Computed Tomography Laser Mammography (CTLM) system is designed to detect breast abnormalities in a non-invasive procedure.
Currently seeking FDA approval, IDSI has commercialized the CTLM system in certain international markets.
Tim Hansen, CEO of IDSI, termed the new financing “an extraordinarily valuable tool to us; it has allowed us to develop the CTLM system and to continue to market it internationally.“
Southridge reports having provided $1 billion in growth capital to portfolio companies globally.
• Norwood Abbey (Melbourne, Australia) reported that its Norwood Eyecare Division has signed a license agreement with Tissue Engineering Refraction (TER), the U.S.-based holder of various intellectual properties, including patent applications and know-how relating to Epi-LASIK and related technologies.
Included in the consideration is an up-front payment of $250,000 worth of Norwood shares, 1 million (three-year) options exercisable at about 48 cents and a 5% equity in Norwood Eyecare. TER will be entitled to certain milestone payments and royalties.
TER is owned by Dr. Edward Perez, PhD, a researcher in the field of refractive surgery technologies.
Norwood said that the exclusive worldwide license agreement signed by Norwood over the Perez intellectual property, when combined with existing IP owned by Norwood, places it in a dominant IP position in the correction of vision using Epi-LASIK laser refractive techniques.
The Perez intellectual property, Norwood said, is based on a number of U.S. and international patents/applications with several hundred claims having application to Epi-LASIK and the removal of the epithelial layer, specifically covering lifting, separating, moving and delaminating epithelial tissue.
Norwood's says its IP includes the patent rights and know-how of Dr. Ioannis Pallikaris – saying he is “recognized as the father of both LASIK and Epi-LASIK technologies.“ Pallikaris is president of the European Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery , president of the University of Crete , and head of ophthalmology at the University of Crete-Vardinoyannion Eye Institute . In addition, Norwood owns the former Ciba Vision patent portfolio covering Epi-LASIK procedures.
Norwood says that its IP position places it in a strong position “to meet all challenges by existing and potential participants in the Epi-LASIK market.“