Cellcor Inc. is reducing its staff by one-third as themerger with Cytogen Corp. nears. The Newton, Mass.company, which already ran out of money, is gettingbridge financing until the effective date of the merger,expected in September. (See BioWorld Today, June 19,p. 1.)
Among the 16 Cellcor employees leaving are RichardD'Antoni, president and CEO, and Harry Wilcox III,senior vice president of business development and chieffinancial officer. Both already are gone. Ronald Brenner,managing general partner of Horsham, Pa.-based HillmanMedical Ventures, assumed the role of Cellcor presidentand CEO until the merger, the company said Thursday.
Hillman, which owns more than half of Cellcor's 5.5million outstanding shares and almost all of 5,250preferred shares, provided Cellcor with additionalfinancing to get it through to the merger date, Brennersaid. Hillman, which is in favor of the merger, hascommitted to the purchase of $12 million in a $23.5million subscription offering by Cytogen to Cellcorshareholders. The bridge financing is coming out of the$12 million, he said.
Brenner said Princeton, N.J.-based Cytogen plans tocontinue clinical trials of Cellcor's lead product,autolymphocyte therapy, a cell processing technology,which is in Phase III trials for the treatment of metastatickidney cancer.
Brenner said Cellcor agreed to the merger only aftertraditional financing approaches had failed. Cellcorshareholders will get .6 shares of Cytogen(NASDAQ:CYTO) for each Cellcor share they hold.
Cytogen's stock closed Friday at $5.63, down 44 cents ashare. At that price the deal would be worth about $25million in Cytogen stock to Cellcor shareholders. Thedeal was valued at $19.5 million the day it wasannounced. n
-- Jim Shrine
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