RUSNANO’s Biopharmaceutical Portfolio Company Successfully Entered IPO in New York

02 November 2020

On October 30, Atea Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a RusnanoMedInvest (RMI, RUSNANO’s 100% subsidiary) portfolio company, held an initial public offering (IPO) on the American stock exchange NASDAQ. The company is engaged in research and development of innovative products for antiviral therapy, including therapy for the coronavirus infection COVID-19.

Atea Pharmaceuticals has placed 12 mln ordinary shares at $24 per share. Thus, the IPO volume amounted to $300 mln, and the valuation of the entire company was about $1.94 bln. The listing took place on the NASDAQ stock exchange, which specializes in high-tech companies’ stocks; company ticker: AVIR.

On the first day of bidding, the company’s shares rose more than 25%.

The IPO was organized by the largest investment banks: J.P. Morgan, Morgan Stanley, Evercore ISI, William Blair.

Funds from the IPO will be used primarily for clinical research and for supporting the company’s operations. The main programme of the company (AT-527) is the creation of a direct-acting drug for the SARS-CoV-2 virus, the cause of the new COVID-19 coronavirus infection. This programme is currently in its Phase 2 clinical trial. The company also conducts clinical researches in treatment of hepatitis C, human respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and dengue fever.

RMI acquired a stake in Atea’s Round A financing in April 2014. RMI is not planning direct participation in the IPO.

In addition to RMI the following venture funds are among the main shareholders of Atea: Morningside Investments Limited, Cormorant Private Healthcare Fund, JPM Partners, Bain Capital Life Sciences Investors, ABG-ATEAB Limited and the company’s key management.

“The investment in Atea is RMI’s most successful deal and a classic story of venture success. In 2014, we invested in the company at its inception. Beneath our very eyes, Atea has gone all the way of technological development, from the search for a potentially effective and safe candidate for direct antiviral action in laboratory experiments and pre-clinical studies in animal models, to obtaining preliminary, but significant practical clinical results in the treatment of a number of diseases that pose a challenge to the entire mankind,” stated Olga Shpichko, Managing Director for Investment Activities of RUSNANO Management Company, commenting on the IPO of Atea Pharmaceuticals.

She also notes that Atea Pharmaceuticals has yet to conclusively prove the drug’s efficacy in treating COVID-19 as part of a large and final Phase 3 clinical trial in 2021. “However, we are confident that the company's huge backlog in the form of a solid scientific and clinical base will allow it to obtain impressive results and replicate the success in other areas of clinical development, primarily in the treatment of hepatitis C, which is another acute social problem all over the world,” Olga Shpichko emphasized.

The biopharmaceutical company Atea Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is engaged in research and development of innovative products for antiviral therapy against RNA viruses. The company is engaged in the following programmes for the treatment of life-threatening viral infections: COVID-19 (key programme), hepatitis C, human respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and dengue fever.

Due to the global pandemic of the new COVID-19 coronavirus infection, which spread globally in February-March 2020, the company promptly switched the main focus of its research to combating the SARS-CoV-2 virus. In May-October, two tranches attracted the investments series D round for a total of $215 mln. Phase 2 clinical trial of the AT-527 candidate in the field of COVID-19 treatment started in May 2020. The results of the study are expected in early 2021, and then the company plans to begin the last Phase 3 clinical trial on the COVID-19 treatment in 2021.

In October 2020, the company entered into a licensing agreement with the global pharmaceutical company Roche (Switzerland), under which the rights to the AT-527 candidate for the COVID-19 treatment (excluding the United States) were ceded to Roche. Roche’s upfront payment, under the terms of the agreement, amounted to $350 mln. The agreement also provides for subsequent significant payments based on the progress of the clinical programme against COVID-19 (milestones) and royalties from future sales.

Additional information

Reference

RUSNANO Joint-Stock Company was founded in March 2011 through reorganization of state corporation Russian Corporation of Nanotechnologies. JSC RUSNANO contributes to implementation of the state policy on the development of the nanotechnology industry by investing directly and through investment funds of nanotechnology in financially effective high-technology projects providing the development of new production facilities in the Russian Federation. Its primary investment focus is in electronics, optoelectronics and telecommunications, healthcare and biotechnology, metallurgy and metalwork, energy, mechanical engineering and instrument making, construction and industrial materials, chemicals and petrochemicals. 100 percent of RUSNANO’s shares are state owned. Thanks to RUSNANO’s investments, there are currently 115 factories and R&D Centers opened in 37 regions in Russia.

Management of assets of RUSNANO JSC is carried out by Limited Liability Company established in December 2013, RUSNANO Management Company. Anatoly Chubais is the Chairman of its Executive Board.

Work to establish nanotechnology infrastructure and carry out educational programs is fulfilled by RUSNANO’s Fund for Infrastructure and Educational Programs, which was also established during the reorganization of the Russian Corporation of Nanotechnologies.

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Venture pharmaceutical company RusnanoMedInvest (RMI) is a subsidiary of Rusnano, a Russian state corporation whose mission is to develop the Russian nanotechnology industry through co-investment in projects with substantial economic potential or social benefit. RMI was established in 2012 to realize advanced projects in medicine and pharmaceuticals involving the transfer of intellectual property rights and modern pharmaceutical production technology to Russia.

For more information, please visit www.rmi.com.ru