Week In Review: Chi-Med Plans $500 Million Hong Kong IPO

Hutchison China MediTech (Chi-Med) (AIM/Nasdaq: HCM) filed to IPO on the Hong Kong Exchange, following listings in London and on NASDAQ, where it has a market capitalization of over $4 billion (see story). In September 2018, Chi-Med was approved to launch fruquintinib in China, the first novel China-developed targeted treatment for cancer. The IPO is expected to raise between $300 million and $500 million. Chi-Med's parent, the conglomerate CK Hutchison, said it will reduce its Chi-Med holdings from 60% at present to less than 50% as part of the offering -- a block that is worth at least $400 million.

BioSense, a New Jersey-Suzhou biopharma, acquired Greater China rights to a Rexahn (NYSE American: RNN) treatment for pancreatic cancer in a deal potentially worth $226 million (see story). BioSense, which will fund all development and commercialization costs for RX-3117 in Greater China, also agreed to start Phase II tests in up to three additional indications for RX-3117 not previously studied by Rexahn. RX-3117 is a novel oral small-molecule nucleoside compound that inhibits both DNA and RNA synthesis, which induces apoptosis.

Realbio Technology (RBT), a Shanghai genomic screening company, raised $15 million in a Series A+ funding (see story). The company has a dual focus on colorectal and microbiome screening. RBT operates in three areas: REALGENE provides scientific research services; REALMED offers early detection of disease based on genomic sequencing including microbiome research, and REALAGR specializes in animal genomics. Founded in 2014, RBT has set up branches in Hangzhou, Qindao, Guiyang and other places.

CASI (Nasdaq: CASI), a US in-licensing pharma with operations in China, acquired global rights to an investigational anti-CD38 immunotherapy from Black Belt Therapeutics of the UK (see story). CASI made a $5.5 million upfront payment and invested $2.2 million in Black Belt. It will also be responsible for milestone and royalty payments. Black Belt was spun out of Tusk when it was acquired by Roche last year. The candidate, TSK011010, is ready to submit an IND, with Phase I trials expected to start in late 2019 or early 2020.

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