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Outsourcing is not just for mundane pharma services anymore. Increasingly, drugmakers are contracting for specialized R&D assistance they expect to provide strategic as well as tactical advantages.
They only come out towards the end of an IPO window. After investors have snapped up all the preclinical or Phase I-stage drug development companies and the venture capitalists are scratching around their portfolios to off-load risk and negative cash flows onto the public markets from investments that weren't formed five minutes ago, then we see the platform companies.
Despite what a young biotechnology company's bankers will tell them, raising debt ahead of the approval and commercialisation of the company's first product, is rarely a good idea. The rationale, which probably sounds good at the time, goes something like this. Once the revenues start flowing from the soon to be approved product, they will easily cover the interest on the debt and by the time the principal, or the convertible become due, the company will be cash flow positive and would be able to pay-off, refinance or convert the liability into shares.
Asterand's chief financial officer, John Stchur has left the company to be replaced by Alan Fishman as interim CFO. Mr Stchur served at Asterand for nine years, most recently negotiating the successful acquisition of BioSeek, while Mr Fishman has over 30 years' financial experience.
- Drug Discovery Tools