Ascelia Pharma intends to carry out a directed new share issue
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Ascelia Pharma AB (publ) (ticker: ACE) (“Ascelia Pharma” or the “Company”) has mandated Danske Bank and Pareto Securities (the "Bookrunners”) to evaluate the conditions for a directed new share issue of approximately SEK 200 million to institutional investors (the “Issue”). In addition to the Issue, the intention is to carry out a coordinated sale of shares of approximately SEK 10 million from participants in the Company’s outstanding incentive program to cover personal tax effects as well as the subscription price and costs arising from the exercise of the incentive program (the "Sell-down", and together with the Issue, the "Private Placement"). The total transaction value of the Private Placement is estimated to approximately SEK 210 million.
The Private Placement is intended to be carried out through an accelerated bookbuilding procedure which commences immediately after the announcement of this press release. Pricing and allocation in the Private Placement (where the price will be the same in the Issue and the Sell-down) is expected to take place before beginning of trading on Nasdaq Stockholm at 09:00 CET on 18 March 2021. The closing, pricing and allocation of the bookbuilding is at the discretion of the Company and may be cancelled at any time. The Company will announce the outcome of the Private Placement when the bookbuilding has been completed in a subsequent press release. The Company will not receive any proceeds from the Sell-down.
Ascelia Pharma intends to use the potential net proceeds from the Issue for (i) financing the Phase II study for the oral chemotherapy drug candidate Oncoral, (ii) accelerating activities towards the commercialization of the diagnostic drug Mangoral, currently in an ongoing Phase III study and (iii) general corporate purposes.
The Company believes that using the flexibility provided by a non-pre-emptive placing is the most appropriate transaction structure in order to raise capital in a time- and cost-effective manner, whilst also further diversifying and strengthening the Company’s shareholder base. Given that the subscription price in the Issue will be determined through an accelerated bookbuilding procedure, it is the board of directors’ assessment that the subscription price will be determined in accordance with market conditions.
The implementation of the Issue requires, among other things, that Ascelia Pharma’s board of directors, after the bookbuilding procedure has been completed, resolves on the Issue and that the Issue is subsequently approved at an Extraordinary General Meeting (the “EGM”) to be held on or around 13 April 2021. A notice to the EGM is expected to be published in connection with the announcement of the outcome of the Private Placement. Existing shareholders together holding approximately 45 percent of the shares and votes in the Company, including the Company’s large owners Sunstone Life Science Ventures Fund II K/S and Øresund-Healthcare Capital K/S, have undertaken, or indicated an intention to vote in favor of the board of directors’ resolution to issue new shares at the EGM.
Participants in the Company’s options program 2018, including CEO Magnus Corfitzen, intend to in connection with the Private Placement, exercise warrants for subscription of 481,573 new shares in aggregate. The intended Sell-down of shares, corresponding to approximately SEK 10 million, will be carried out to cover personal tax effects as well as the subscription price and costs arising from the exercise of the incentive program. Through the exercise of warrants and the intended Sell-down, Magnus Corfitzen is expected to double his shareholding in Ascelia Pharma.
In connection with the Private Placement, the Company has agreed to a lock-up undertaking on future share issues for a period of 180 days, subject to customary exceptions. In addition, existing shareholders Sunstone Life Science Ventures Fund II K/S and Øresund-Healthcare Capital K/S, as well as the management and board of directors who hold shares in the Company at the time of the transaction, have undertaken not to sell any shares in Ascelia Pharma during the same period, subject to customary exceptions.
Danske Bank and Pareto Securities are acting as Joint Bookrunners in connection with the Private Placement. Setterwalls Advokatbyrå AB is acting as legal advisor to the Company and Baker McKenzie Advokatbyrå KB is acting as legal advisor to the Joint Bookrunners.
For further information, please contact:
Magnus Corfitzen, CEO
Tel: +46 735 179 118
Mikael Widell, Head of IR & Communications
Tel: +46 703 11 99 60
This information is such information as Ascelia Pharma AB (publ) is obliged to make public pursuant to the EU Market Abuse Regulation. The information was submitted for publication, through the agency of the contact persons set out above, at 5.31 pm CET on 17 March 2021.
About Ascelia Pharma
Ascelia Pharma is a biotech company focused on orphan oncology treatments. We develop and commercialize novel drugs that address unmet medical needs and have a clear development and market pathway. The company has two drug candidates – Mangoral and Oncoral – in clinical development. Ascelia Pharma has global headquarters in Malmö, Sweden, and is listed on Nasdaq Stockholm (ticker: ACE). For more information, please visit http://www.ascelia.com.
Mangoral (manganese chloride tetrahydrate) is a novel oral contrast agent for MR-imaging developed to improve the detection and visualization of focal liver lesions (including liver metastases and primary tumors) in patients with reduced kidney function. These patients are at risk of serious side effects from the currently available class of gadolinium-based contrast agents. Mangoral, which has been granted an Orphan Drug Designation by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), is currently in Phase 3 development, including the global multi-center SPARKLE study.
Oncoral is a novel irinotecan chemotherapy tablet developed initially for the treatment of gastric cancer. Irinotecan chemotherapy has an established potent anti-tumor effect. Oncoral is a daily tablet with the potential to offer better patient outcomes with improved safety following the daily dosing at home compared to intravenous high-dose infusions at the hospital. Following successful Phase 1 results, Oncoral is now prepared for Phase 2 clinical development.
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Information to distributors
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