Of course, in order for that many IPOs to be pumped out, there must be healthy demand from investors for them. That demand has been clearly indicated; many of these deals are being up-sized, pricing above expectations, and/or making sharp run-ups once open for trading. For instance, on June 28, Tricida (TCDA) increased its deal size, priced above expectations ($19 vs. $16-$18), and surged to above $34 in the first days after opening; it currently trades higher than its pricing point by nearly 50%. Another recent notable performer is Autolus Therapeutics (AUTL), which also up-sized its IPO, priced above expectations, and opened for trading with a 65% pop.
With that back-drop, it comes as little surprise that today's pharmaceutical IPOs -- Crinetics Pharmaceuticals (CRNX 23.10, +6.10, +35.88%) and Rubius Therapeutics (RUBY) -- also saw strong interest. Looking specifically at CRNX, its IPO was bumped up to 6.0 mln shares from 5.0 mln, while pricing at $17 vs. the $15-$17 expected range. In total, it generates $102 mln in gross proceeds from the offering, about 28% more than anticipated.
The lead underwriters on the deal were JP Morgan, Leerink Partners, and Piper Jaffray. Shares opened for trading earlier this morning on the Nasdaq at $19.25.
CRNX is a clinical stage pharmaceutical company focused on developing therapeutics for rare endocrine diseases and endocrine-related tumors. Endocrine pathways function to maintain homeostasis and commonly use peptide hormones acting through G protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) to regulate many aspects of physiology including growth, energy, metabolism, gastrointestinal function, and stress responses.
Its lead product candidate is CRN00808. This oral somatostatin agonist is currently in clinical development for the treatment of acromegaly, which arises from a benign pituitary tumor that secretes excess growth hormone, causing excess secretion of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) by the liver. This loss of homeostasis in the growth hormone axis results in excess tissue growth and other adverse metabolic effects throughout the body. More than 25,000 people in the U.S. suffer from acromegaly.
In March 2018, CRNX reported initial results from a Phase 1 trial of the candidate to evaluate its safety, pharmacokinetics (PK), and pharmacodynamics (PD) in 99 healthy volunteers. CRN00808 demonstrated clinical proof-of-concept by potently suppressing stimulated GH and baseline IGF-1 in these subjects. The company plans to submit an investigational new drug application (IND) to the FDA in the second half of 2018 and, if accepted, plans to initiate two Phase 2 clinical trials in acromegaly patients in early 2019.
Taking a quick look at the financials, CRNX generated grant revenue of $442K for the three months ended March 31, 2018. Loss from operations was ($5.5) mln, as compared to ($2.6) mln in the year ago period. In terms of the balance sheet, cash and equivalents on a pro forma basis was $145.3 mln as of March 31, 2018.
CRNX believes that the net proceeds from this offering, together with its existing cash and cash equivalents, will enable it to fund its operations for at least the next 24 months. In particular, it expects that the net proceeds from this offering will allow it to complete its planned Phase 2 clinical trials for CRN00808 and its planned Phase 1 clinical trials for CRN02481 and CRN01941.