DUBLIN – In what continues to be a year like no other, European biotechnology firms engaged in drug development raised $4.783 billion in equity financing during the third quarter. It is an unprecedented level of funding for the sector.
DUBLIN – Even by any normal measure of European biotechnology investment, the first two quarters of 2020 were memorable. If it maintains the present momentum, Europe’s drug development sector is on course for a record-breaking year, having already raised $5.034 billion in publicly disclosed equity investments. That puts it well ahead of any other year – the sector edged to a new high in 2019 when it raised $7.739 billion over the full 12 months – but, of course, comparisons with any other year seem irrelevant. This year is like no other. The COVID-19 pandemic has changed everything.
Coming out of the IPO gate strong was Lausanne, Switzerland-based ADC Therapeutics SA, which priced about 12 million shares at $19 each, for gross proceeds of about $232.7 million in an upsized deal. Shares (NYSE:ADCT) ended the day at $29.65, up $10.65, or 56%.
Although, the appetite for biopharma IPOs in the U.S. slowed during the meltdown of the financial markets in March, the flow of new offerings has been steady this year, according to BioWorld, with 11 companies graduating to the public stage and listing on U.S. exchanges by the end of April, collectively raising $1.774 billion along the way. This amount is 9.5% higher than the $1.62 billion raised from 15 U.S. biopharma IPOs completed in the same period last year.