Viela Bio Gears Up For IPO

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Viela Bio filed an amended S-1 form with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regarding its IPO. The company intends to price 7.5 million shares in the range of $19 to $21, with an overallotment option for an additional 1.125 million shares. At the maximum price, the entire offering is valued up to $181.1 million. The company expects to list its shares on the Nasdaq under the symbol VIE.

The underwriters for the offering are Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Cowen, and Guggenheim Securities.

This is a clinical-stage biotechnology company pioneering treatments for autoimmune and severe inflammatory diseases, which are collectively referred to as autoimmune diseases. This approach seeks to redefine the treatment of autoimmune diseases by focusing on critical biological pathways shared across multiple indications. Management believes that this approach, which targets the underlying molecular pathogenesis of the disease, allows it to develop more precise therapies, identify patients more likely to respond to treatment and pursue multiple indications for each of our product candidates.

The company is focusing on the treatment of neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder (NMOSD), a rare, devastating condition that attacks the optic nerve, spinal cord and brain stem, and often leads to irreversible blindness and paralysis.

In January 2019, the firm announced positive topline data from its N-MOmentum pivotal trial, the largest trial ever completed in the disease, in a broad patient population. Viela Bio received Breakthrough Therapy Designation for inebilizumab for the treatment of this disease from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in April 2019, and in August 2019, the FDA accepted for review Viela’s Biologics License Application (BLA) for inebilizumab. The FDA set a Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA) date of June 11, 2020.

Viela Bio intends to use the net proceeds from this offering as follows:

  • Approximately $50 million to support our activities for our BLA approval process for inebilizumab and to conduct pre-commercial and commercial launch activities;
  • Approximately $40 million to conduct clinical trials for inebilizumab in additional indications;
  • Approximately $30 million to advance development of VIB4920;
  • Approximately $10 million to advance development of VIB7734; and
  • The balance for working capital and other general corporate purposes.
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