Allogene Therapeutics Eyes IPO of up to $288 Million

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Six months after officially launching and one month after securing $120 million in private financing, Allogene Therapeutics is looking to score between $272 and $288 million from an initial public offering.

On Tuesday, Renaissance Capital reported the company founded by former Kite Pharma executives Arie Belldegrun, and David Chang, will offer 16 million shares at a price range of $16 to $18 per share. If the high-end pricing is hit, that would secure $288 million for the company and would, according to Renaissance Capital, give Allogene a “fully diluted market value of $2.1 billion and an enterprise value of $1.4 billion.”

South San Francisco-based Allogene announced its intentions to file for an IPO last month. The company intends to list itself on the Nasdaq Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol “ALLO.” Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC, J.P. Morgan Securities LLC, Cowen and Company, LLC and Jefferies LLC are acting as the joint book-running managers for the proposed offering.

Founded in 2017 and coming out of stealth mode in April, Allogene hit the ground running with $300 million in a Series A financing to develop off-the-shelf CAR-T therapy products. The company’s engineered T-cells are allogeneic, which means they are taken from healthy donors for intended use in any patient. Current approved CAR-T therapies, including Yescarta, which Belldegrun and Chang were instrumental in developing when they were at Kite, are autologous, meaning they are extracted from an individual patient for that patient’s use.

Following Allogene’s launch in April, the company completed an agreement for Pfizer’s allogenic CAR-T portfolio. As part of that deal, Allogene secured the rights to 16 preclinical CAR T assets licensed from Cellectis and Servier and one clinical asset licensed from Servier, UCART19, an allogeneic CAR-T therapy that is being developed for treatment of CD19-expressing hematological malignancies.

In its S-1 filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Allogene said UCART19 is being studied in clinical trials in patients with relapsed or refractory B-cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). The company said it anticipates UCART19 will be advanced to registrational trials in the second half of 2019. Additionally, Allogene said the company plans to file an Investigational New Drug Application with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in the first half of next year for the company’s second allogeneic anti-CD19 CAR T cell product candidate, ALLO-501. That therapy will be for the treatment of relapsed or refractory non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

Allogene also noted in its filing that it has a “deep pipeline” of allogeneic CAR T cell product candidates targeting multiple promising antigens in a host of hematological malignancies and solid tumors.

When Allogene’s stock goes public, Belldegrun and Chang will have about 10 percent and 4 percent of the company’s shares, respectively. Those shares will be worth millions, but it’s a position the two men are well acquainted with. When Gilead Sciences acquired Kite Pharmaceuticals, Belldegrun snagged a nice payday of $694 million. Chang walked away with about $98 million.

Allogene is the latest in a series of biotechs going public. Earlier this week Israel-based Gamida Cell Ltd. filed for a $69 million initial public offering. 

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