Monday, April 10, 2000
President Clinton's belated mea culpa for the genomics blow-off,
followed by Celera's news that it had completed the genome of a single
person, provided the hangover remedy that brought investors bellying back up
to the bar, as the industry priced $1.13 billion worth of IPOs and follow-ons
last week. All told, 11 underwritten deals priced: seven follow-ons brought
in $501.2 million, and four IPOs carved out $626.8 million.
Meanwhile, the BioCentury 100 index posted a 7 percent gain,
reversing the past four weeks of pummeling of life science stocks since the
White House-induced panic about the patentability of genomics discoveries on
March 14. Investors rallied behind Clinton's statement last week that companies
should be able to patent genomic discoveries with specific commercial applications
(see BioCentury Extra, Wednesday April 5) and continued to buy on CRA's
news (see Time Out, A5).
Investors pushed CRA up $38.50 (42 percent) to $130.625 on
the week. Other gainers included Millennium (MLNM), up $43.375 (33 percent)
to $173.25, and Human Genome Sciences (HGSI), which added $10.875 (13
percent) to $93.938.
The rebound was even better in the U.K., as the BioCentury
London Index closed up 230 points (25 percent) from Tuesday, stemming early
declines. Cambridge Antibody Technology (LSE:CAT), which had taken a
big haircut during its follow-on road show, led the London group by jumping
875p (43 percent) to 2912.5p and a market cap of £801 million ($1.3 billion)
(see "Beneath the Bar", next page).
Continental biotech shares responded in a similar manner, with cancer and infectious diseases play Maxim (SSE:MAXM; MMP) up SKK98 (26 percent) to SKK480 in Stockholm (up $12.813 to $59.75 on NASDAQ) and ultra-high throughput screening company Evotec (NMarkt:EVT), up E23.5 (23 percent) to E124.