Although funds raised for med-tech companies in the third quarter were less than half of the amount raised in the second quarter and 14% less than the first quarter, it was still the best quarter of 2020 for IPOs and venture capital (VC) financings. It also pushed the money raised through all financing types to its highest level in four years.
In a world where the traditional way of conducting business has been disrupted for about eight months and counting, no one would have faulted the biopharmaceutical sector if its operations had been placed in a slow-down mode until the COVID-19 pandemic “all clear” had been sounded. Yet, despite the restrictions faced, companies have adapted quickly to the prevailing environment.
As clinical trials, halted due to the COVID-19 pandemic, begin to resume and biopharma companies find workarounds to keep the research going, activity in phase I, II and III studies picked up by more than 40% in September.
The appetite for biopharma IPOs this year has been voracious with no signs of a slowdown anytime soon. Year-to-date, a total of $14.63 billion was raised from 66 new global issues, a total that is already well ahead of the $10.7 billion in 2018, from 80 transactions, that represented the previous record for IPOs. In terms of volume, BioWorld has recorded that the highest number of IPOs in a single year was 84 in 2014, followed by 83 in 2000.
With phase III vaccine trials nearly enrolled and data expected soon, a half-year of expedited development efforts, plus massive government funding may soon provide the ammunition needed to effectively stop the SARS-CoV-2 scourge of 2020.