US IPOs not done yet for 2018 as two foreigners pick Nasdaq for their maiden launch.

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The News:

Last week, Taiwan Liposome Co. Ltd. (TLC), which is developing lipid formulations of approved drugs for pain and eye disease, raised $22 million by offering 3.75 million ADSs at $5.80. Listed on the Taipei Exchange (TPEx: 4152), Taipei-based TLC closed in Taiwan at an as-converted $6.48 per ADS last Tuesday. At the $5.80 US offer price, the company would command a market cap of $185 million.

TLC had previously filed to raise $29 million by offering 5.0 million ADSs at the same price. In its previous filing, the company had identified certain potential investors that had indicated on buying up to $20 million of the deal. Taiwan Liposome Company lists on the Nasdaq under the symbol “TLC.” Cantor Fitzgerald acted as lead manager on the deal. Shares closed the week up 5% at $6.10.

Elsewhere, Tiziana Life Sciences PLC, which is developing antibody therapies to combat NASH, Crohn’s disease, MS, and cancer, raised $4.4 million by offering 442,910 shares at $9.90 each. The offer price is roughly equal to the as-converted price of Tiziana’s common shares listed on London’s AIM (AIM: TILS).

In addition to the $4.4 million raised in the US IPO, London-based Tiziana disclosed that it had raised $1.5 million in an equity offering in late October, raised $1.4 million by issuing shares from an exercised warrant, and issued new shares to extinguish $1.8 million in debt. Tiziana lists on the Nasdaq under the symbol “TLSA.” Laidlaw & Company (UK) acted as a lead manager on the deal. Shares closed the week down 1% at $9.80.

Steve’s Take:

Following the short Thanksgiving week, the IPO market is preparing for some of the year’s final launches. Companies still have a narrow window (yesterday and today, Tuesday) to submit initial filings and still price before year-end, but most of 2018’s remaining deals already are in the pipeline. Three companies become eligible to schedule IPOs this week, according to Renaissance Capital: biotech giant Moderna Inc. (MRNA), preclinical immunotherapy biotech Synthorx Inc. (THOR), and micro-cap biotech DiaMedica Therapeutics Inc. (DMAC).

Street research is expected for three recent IPOs this week: Axonics Modulation Technologies Inc. (AXNX), Orchard Therapeutics PLC (ORTX) and Twist Bioscience Inc. (TWST).

1) BofA/Merrill BofA/Merrill analyst Bob Hopkins initiated Axonics Modulation Technologies Inc. with a “Buy” and $23 price target. Hopkins says it is well positioned to take share in the $650M sacral neuromodulation market following FDA approval and also expects the launch to accelerate market growth. Separately, research professionals at Wells Fargo initiated coverage on Axonics with a key “Outperform” rating. The price target for AXNX is $22. It suggests a possible upside of 48% from firm’s current price. Its IPO was priced at $15.

Axonics, a medical technology company based in Irvine, CA, focuses on the design, development, and commercialization of sacral neuromodulation (SNM) solutions. The company has market cap of $399.31 million. The SNM therapy is primarily used to treat patients with overactive bladder, fecal incontinence, and urinary retention. It currently has negative earnings. The firm was formerly known as American Restorative Medicine Inc. and changed its name in August 2013. Shares are trading off 1% since its IPO at $14.84 Tuesday afternoon.

2) Research analysts at Cowen assumed coverage on shares of Orchard Therapeutics PLC in a report issued on Monday, The Fly reports. The firm set an “Outperform” rating on the stock.

Separately, Goldman Sachs Group initiated coverage on shares of London-based Orchard in a research note on Monday. They set a “Neutral” rating for the company. Orchard shares are now trading at $16.01, up 14% since its IPO, which priced at $14. Orchard Therapeutics has a fifty-two week low of $13.00 and a fifty-two week high of $19.24.

Orchard Therapeutics bills itself as “a leading global fully integrated commercial-stage company dedicated to transforming the lives of patients with rare diseases through innovative gene therapies.”

Orchard’s portfolio of autologous ex-vivo, gene-therapy programs has demonstrated sustained clinical benefit in over 150 patients across five disease areas. These programs include Strimvelis, the first autologous ex-vivo, gene-therapy approved by the EMA in 2016, three programs in advanced registrational studies in MLD (metachromatic leukodystrophy), WAS (Wiskott Aldrich syndrome) and ADA-SCID (adenosine deaminase severe combined immunodeficiency), two other clinical programs in X-CGD (X-linked chronic granulomatous disease) and beta-thalassemia, as well as an extensive preclinical pipeline.

3) And Robert W. Baird started coverage on shares of Twist Bioscience Corp. in a report issued on Monday, The Fly reports. The firm set an “Outperform” rating on the stock. A number of other research firms also recently issued reports on TWST. Cowen began coverage on shares of Twist Bioscience in a report on Monday. They set an “Outperform” rating on the stock. JPMorgan Chase & Co. began coverage on shares of Twist Bioscience in a report on Monday. They set a “Neutral” rating and a $27.00 price target on the stock. That suggest a potential upside of 10% from the current trading price. Twist shares are now up 75% at $24.53 since its IPO was priced at $14.

Twist Bioscience, a synthetic biology company, manufactures and sells synthetic DNA-based products. The San Francisco-based company’s DNA synthesis platform enables the manufacturing of synthetic DNA by writing DNA on a silicon chip. It offers synthetic DNA-based products, including synthetic genes, tools for sample preparation, antibody libraries for drug discovery and development, and DNA as a digital data storage medium.

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