It has undeniably been an eventful week for Swedish biotech Abliva. On Tuesday, the company, whose focus is primary mitochondrial diseases, announced that they are conducting a 200 MSEK financing round. The bulk of the raised capital will be used to finance the upcoming registrational phase II/III trial with lead candidate KL1333.
Primary mitochondrial diseases affect the cells’ ability to convert energy and can lead to severe symptoms, such as stroke-like episodes, muscle weakness and heart failure. As there are few treatment options available today the medical need is extensive.
Two mitochondrial disease candidates
Abliva’s two mitochondrial disease candidates KL1333 and NV354 have both shown promise within the space. KL1333, the company’s most advanced drug candidate, is developed for the treatment of several mitochondrial diseases in adults. The candidate made considerable progress in 2021 with FDA’s approval of the Investigational New Drug application in the fourth quarter. This year Abliva aims to initiate a registrational phase II/III study and just reported approval of the study by UK regulators in the Q1 report issued on Tuesday.
The company’s second candidate for mitochondrial disease, NV354, is being developed for the treatment of Leigh’s syndrome. The company is about to embark on the assembly of the regulatory documentation necessary for a clinical phase I trial approval.
Capital injection to finance phase II/III
In order to advance its two candidates, Abliva needed to secure funding, a feat that the company has now achieved, despite the rather challenging market conditions.
On Tuesday evening Abliva announced that it had secured 200 MSEK in funding, which will primarily be used to fund the phase II/III study of KL1333.
The company raised 150 MSEK through a directed share issue to several life science specialists and institutional investors, such as London-based IP Goup and Norwegian OPF. Abliva’s largest shareholder Hadean Ventures will also take part in the financing round. Additionally, Hadean will also convert its outstanding convertible loan, corresponding to 26 MSEK plus accrued interest.
Abliva will also raise 50 MSEK through a fully underwritten rights issue of approximately 50 MSEK. The subscription price in both the directed issue and the rights issue is set to 0.35 SEK per share, a 10 per cent discount to the share price at market close on 31 May.
The subscription period in the rights issue runs from June 10th, 2022, until and including June 27th, 2022. The total dilution of the issues amounts to approximately 58.8 per cent based on the total number of shares in Abliva after both the rights issue and the directed issue.
Eighty-five per cent of the proceeds will go towards the phase II/III clinical trial evaluating the company’s lead asset, KL1333. Remaining financing will be used for preparation of NV354 for clinical development and supporting general and administrative expenses until mid-2024.
Comments from the CEO
BioStock spoke with Abliva’s CEO Ellen Donnelly in a studio interview where she commented on the news:
“Now when the financing is secured, we can finally focus on what we love doing, which is developing new novel therapies for patients with these rare diseases.”The content of BioStock’s news and analyses is independent but the work of BioStock is to a certain degree financed by life science companies. The above article concerns a company from which BioStock has received financing.