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London, UK – Mereo, a UK-based specialty biopharmaceutical company, is pleased to announce that it expects Admission of its Ordinary Shares to trading on AIM to take effect on 9 June 2016. The Company has also completed a supplementary Capital Raise with total gross proceeds of £14.8 million comprised of a private placement of its Ordinary Shares raising gross proceeds of £11.35 million at a price of £2.21 per Ordinary Share (the Private Placement) and a cash investment by existing shareholder Novartis by way of a convertible loan, in the amount of £3.46 million. The Capital Raise follows a private placement in July 2015 when the Company received £20 million, with a further £56.5 million committed. Trading in Mereo’s Ordinary Shares on the AIM market of the London Stock Exchange is expected to commence at 8:00am on 9 June 2016 under the ticker symbol “MPH” with ISIN GB00BZ4G2K23.
The Group’s focus is on the development of innovative medicines that aim to address unmet medical needs in rare and specialty disease areas and improve patient quality of life. The Group seeks to selectively acquire clinical-stage product candidates with demonstrated clinically meaningful data from large pharmaceutical companies and to further develop these product candidates to subsequent key value inflection points or to commercialisation. The Group is an early adopter of a novel business model that aligns its interests with those of large pharmaceutical companies.
In July 2015, the Group acquired three Phase 2 product candidates which comprise its initial portfolio from Novartis, a global pharmaceutical company with a history of robust product development and a reputation for product study data quality and secured £76.5 million (US$118 million), gross proceeds, by way of an initial private placement of its Ordinary Shares. Since that time the Company has initiated a Phase 2 study and a Phase 2b study in relation to two of the product candidates in 2016 and intends to commence registration studies during H2 2016 for the third product candidate. In the near term, the Group aims to further develop this portfolio, while in the medium to long term the Group intends to build a broader pipeline of product candidates which fulfil Mereo’s selection criteria.
Commenting on today’s announcement, Denise Scots-Knight, Chief Executive Officer of Mereo, said: “We are very excited to be joining AIM, allowing the Company to take the next logical step towards realising our vision of becoming a leading speciality biopharma company. On Admission we will have raised over £90 million from institutional investors since July 2015 which has allowed us to acquire three carefully selected clinical stage pipeline assets from Novartis and subsequently advance these product candidates, including through the initiation of two new clinical studies. Our strategy is to build, over time, a diverse portfolio, and having publically-traded shares, will provide additional flexibility to secure the next product candidates which are likely to be primarily sourced from large pharmaceutical companies. Such product candidates are expected to have compelling market potential, robust preclinical, clinical and manufacturing data packages, and a clear path to a significant value inflection point. We also aim to retain optionality on how we realise value from each asset downstream.”
“We would like to thank our existing and new shareholders who have participated in the supplemental Capital Raise we have announced today. We now have sufficient funding in the near to medium term to significantly advance the clinical development for the three initial product candidates in our pipeline to potential significant value inflection points.”
“We are well positioned to leverage our early mover advantage in a novel business model that aligns our interests with those of large pharmaceutical companies for drug development and we are confident that we have the right ingredients and experience to build a scalable and sustainable specialty pharmaceutical business”