BIO Written Testimony for House Financial Services Hearing on Legislative Proposals to Help Fuel Capital and Growth on Main Street
Testimony of Brian Hahn
Good morning Chairman Huizenga, Ranking Member Maloney, and Members of the Capital Markets, Securities, and Investment Subcommittee. My name is Brian Hahn, and I am the Chief Financial Officer of GlycoMimetics, Inc., a 48-employee public biotech company based in Rockville, Maryland. I am also the Co-Chair of the Finance and Tax Committee at the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO), which represents GlycoMimetics and over 1,100 other growth-stage biotechs that are driving the search for the next generation of cures and breakthrough medicines.
The ability of growing businesses to access the public markets, as supported by the JOBS Act, is of paramount importance to biotechnology innovation because investment capital is the lifeblood of scientific advancement. It costs over $1 billion to develop a single life-saving treatment, and most companies spend more than a decade in the lab before their first therapy is approved. During this long development process, virtually every dollar spent by an emerging biotech comes directly from investors. Expenses ranging from buy-in-bulk beakers to $150 million clinical trials are all funded by investment capital because biotechs remain pre-revenue through their entire time in the lab and the clinic.
Early-stage innovators do not have the luxury of funding their product development through sales revenue. Instead, the groundbreaking research that leads to a company’s first product is funded by a series of financing rounds from angel investors, venture capitalists, large pharmaceutical companies, and, eventually, public market investors. The capital burden of a pivotal clinical trial – which can require hundreds of patients in the clinic to meet the stringent safety and efficacy standards necessary to ensure patient care – often necessitates an IPO to fund this critical stage of the research process.
I am pleased to be here today to discuss policies that will help small growth companies like biotechs. My testimony today will address legislative proposals as well as the recommendations in the recently released report, which BIO helped develop, titled, “Expanding the On-Ramp: Recommendations to Help More Companies Go and Stay Public”. These proposals are the result of thoughtful consideration of the issues facing emerging companies like mine and would help small biotechs grow and eventually put a product on the market...