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Bio China 2012

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This IPO Window Looks Familiar…

The recent pace of biotech IPOs mimics what the industry saw after the dot-com crash, with the industry logging one IPO per month on average for the three years following the crash. There is a near perfect overlay between the cumulative number of IPOs in the recent 2009-2012 IPO window and the number seen in 2003-2007 (see chart below). Back in October 2006, three years into the window, the US had 43 total biotech IPOs. This is uncannily close to the 45 total IPOs we have today, also three years into the new window.

“I see a generally favorable IPO market continuing into 2013. Well-positioned companies with intact clinical development pipelines and even some with commercial profiles are making it to the public markets on acceptable terms and trading well in the after-market, and it’s encouraging to see a few companies in pre-clinical development succeed in the public markets as well.”

Peter Reikes, Vice Chairman, Healthcare Investment Banking, Stifel Nicolaus Weisel

In the fourth year of the previous IPO window, IPO frequency jumped to over 1.6 per month. If the pattern repeats, 2013 could be on pace for a banner year with 20 biotech IPOs. Given the 20 private biotechs that have already filed to go public and the momentum in the broader biotech index, 2013 could live up to this lofty projection.


“In addition to the overall sector’s strong public market performance, the IPOs of 2012 have performed even better on average, giving private companies hope for successful market debuts.  The Passage of the Jobs Act, the return of pre-clinical company IPOs have shown that the IPO window may be opening a bit wider than in recent years,” stated Alan Eisenberg, BIO’s Executive Vice President, Emerging Companies and Business Development.

This year’s BIO CEO & Investor Conference, taking place February 11-12, 2013, at the Waldorf Astoria New York, will focus on public market biotech companies, which are having a banner year, outperforming the broader market indices. The event will feature a new track of company presentations from late-stage private companies to better showcase the growth opportunities in this area of the industry. “These private companies represent the future of our industry, and investors are increasingly finding value in pre-IPO companies, through crossover investing and other investment vehicles,” added Eisenberg. “This event is an invaluable opportunity for industry executives to participate in and help shape the future investment landscape of the biotechnology industry.”

For more on the state of recent biotech IPOs, read more here from BIO Industry Analysis.