Synergen Inc. on Tuesday said it raised $225.4 million in thelargest single financing in the history of the biotech industry.The Boulder, Colo., company sold 3.5 million shares, plus a525,000-share overallotment, at $56 per share.

Synergen stock (NASDAQ:SYGN) rose 88 cents on Tuesday to$57.50.

The funds will be used primarily for research and developmentand clinical trials, the company said.

Next year, Synergen will have five products in clinicals forbetween 12 and 15 indications. Through 1993, the companyexpects to spend about $45 million for preclinical and clinicaltrials, said spokeswoman Debra Bannister. The company is alsobuilding a $50 million manufacturing plant and plans to add150 people in 1992 to its current 270 employees.

Among the most closely watched products in the clinic areAntril interleukin-1 receptor antagonist for sepsis and septicshock.

Synergen has no plans to use the cash to seek corporatepartners among the smaller biotech companies, Chief ExecutiveOfficer Jon Saxe told BioWorld. While the company is notactively looking, it "would consider very specific situations thatfit into our corporate strategy," Saxe said.

In February, Synergen raised $86.3 million through the sale of2.5 million shares at $34.50 per share. At the end ofSeptember, Synergen had $115 million in cash, plus another$40 million available through its R&D partnership, SynergenClinical Partners, to develop its Antril.

Despite its hefty war chest, Synergen might raise more money,possibly through a convertible stock offering, before launchinga product, Bannister said.

Despite its healthy cash balance, the company is not anattractive acquisition candidate, she said. Synergen's currentmarket capitalization is almost $1.5 billion. "The increase in ourstock price and the number of shares outstanding makes uspretty expensive," Bannister said. "An offer would have to be ata premium to where we are now."

After the offering, the Boulder, Colo., company has 24.6 millionshares outstanding. Alex. Brown & Sons Inc. and Robertson,Stephens & Co. co-managed the offering.

-- Karen Bernstein BioWorld Staff

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