Reducing Barriers to Capital Formation

Kenneth I. Moch
President and Chief Executive Officer,
Chimerix, Inc.

On behalf of the Biotechnology Industry Organization
Before the United States House of Representatives Committee on Financial Services,
Subcommittee on Capital Markets and Government Sponsored Enterprises
"Reducing Barriers to Capital Formation, Part II"
July 10, 2013

Executive Summary

  • Chimerix is a clinical-stage biotechnology company based in Durham, North Carolina. The Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) represents Chimerix and more than 1,100 innovative biotechnology companies, along with academic institutions, state biotechnology centers, and related organizations in all 50 states.
  • Chimerix undertook a successful IPO in April 2013 using key provisions in the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act. Twenty-seven biotech companies have taken advantage of the JOBS Act to go public, and many more are on file with the SEC.
  • A healthy public market is key to the success of the biotech industry, as growing innovators often turn to an IPO to fund late-stage clinical trials. BIO supports targeted market structure reforms that will decrease the cost of capital and increase liquidity for emerging biotechnology companies trading on the public market.
  • BIO supports the Fostering Innovation Act, which would amend the filing status classifications in SEC Rule 12b-2 to classify companies with a public float below $250 million or revenues below $100 million as non-accelerated filers.
  • BIO supports the Tick Size Flexibility Act, which would institute a pilot program to allow companies that fall below a certain revenue or public float threshold to choose a new tick size for their stock.
  • BIO supports the Spread Pricing Liquidity Act, which would allow companies with a public float below $500 million and an average trading volume below 500,000 shares daily to choose a new tick size for their stock.
  • BIO supports the Audit Integrity and Job Protection Act, which would prevent PCAOB from mandating that public companies periodically rotate their external audit firms.
  • BIO supports a small issuer exemption from XBRL compliance, which stalls the development process by unnecessarily diverting funds to reporting and away from R&D.
  • BIO supports effective and expeditious implementation of the JOBS Act, the capital formation impact of which has been blunted by delays at the SEC.