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Barry Cohen
Barry Cohen
Articles (48) 

Gene Therapy Parent BridgeBio Set to Go Public

Conglomerate has 15 drug development programs at companies under its wing

BridgeBio, a conglomerate made up of other companies specializing in genetic diseases, plans to go public with a $225 million initial public offering. This comes on the heels of a nearly $300 million financing round in January.

The company will trade on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol BBIO. The IPO is being underwritten by J.P. Morgan, Goldman Sachs, Piper Jaffary and Mizuho Securities, among others.

Palo Alto, California-based BridgeBio is a four-year-old company that adopted a business model championed by the Sloan Business School of Management at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The company finds drugs to treat genetic conditions, then farms them out to their subsidiaries to develop.

One of the companies in the BrideBio stable is Eidos Therapeutics (NASDAQ:EIDX), which has had a nice run since mid-December, going from about $12 to its current price of more than $32. The company is developing a drug for a type of heart disease that could eventually compete with two formulations of a Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) medicine that has the Food and Drug Administration's approval.

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Other potential competitors in this category are Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ALNY); Ionis (NASDAQ:IONS), whose drug is being marketed by Akcea Therapeutics (NASDAQ:AKCA); and early-stage compounds under development by Intellia Therapeutics (NASDAQ:NTLA) and Arcturus Therapeutics (NASDAQ:ARCT).

The company’s pipeline includes 15 development programs spread across about a dozen subsidiaries, according to a May 28 article in MedCity News. Several of the programs are aimed at indications that could turn into drugs that could generate at least $1 billion in annual sales, according to the company’s Form S-1. Two of its candidates are in late-stage clinical trials.

Early last year, BridgeBio established QED Therapeutics to handle a drug to treat bile duct cancer. The drug was acquired from Novartis (NYSE:NVS) when the pharma giants decided to discontinue its development program.

BridgeBio is headed by one of its co-founders, Neal Kumar, who was previously a principal at Third Rock Ventures. There he supported and managed various portfolio companies. He is also CEO and a member of the board of directors at Eidos.

Disclosure: The author has no positions in any of the stocks mentioned in this article.

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About the author:

Barry Cohen
Barry Cohen has nearly 40 years experience in communications and marketing, the majority in senior positions at large international health care companies, including Abbott Laboratories and Bayer Inc.

He has contributed to a number of financial websites, writing primarily about the stocks of health care companies.

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