BORNHEIM, Germany - The tissue-engineering company BioTissue Technologies AG plans to have the initial public offering of its shares Friday on Frankfurt's Neuer Markt.

The Freiburg, Germany, company is offering about 1 million individual share certificates. In addition, there will be a greenshoe of 117,000 shares. The expected range is between EUR27 and EUR34 per share, which would result in gross proceeds of EUR27 million (US$23 million) to EUR34 million.

Underwriters are the Landesbank Baden-Wuerttemberg, Equinet Securities AG and Direkt Anlage Bank AG. Following the transaction, nearly 38 percent of the shares will be in free float, according to a company spokesperson. The lock-up periods will last for 12 months for financial investors and investors from the company's management, while others (University Hospital of Freiburg and individual scientists) have agreed to lock up their shares for 36 months.

BioTissue Technologies develops human tissue substitutes grown from patients' own cells. The first product, launched in September 1999, is BioSeed S, an autologous skin substitute mainly for treatment of chronic wounds. In September the company launched MelanoSeed for the treatment of vitiligo. It provides pigment cells to patients' depigmented areas of skin. Last week the company announced transplantation of a finger joint substitute grown and formed from the patient's own bone and cartilage cells at the Freiburg hospital.

The company next year expects to launch autologous substitutes for mucous membranes of the mouth, for bone and for cartilage.

Estimated sales are DM600,000 in 2000, DM3.3 million in 2001 and DM15.5 million (US$6.8 million) in 2002, according to the company, which said it expects to break even in 2003. BioTissue was founded in 1997.