by David Wagner and Daniel Shvartsman
French pharmaceutical company Valneva SE ADR (NASDAQ: VALN ) shares dropped after announcing a share offering, with shares trading down 12% on the news.
The vaccine maker announced a 5.5M share offering after the close Tuesday. The company had previously risen nearly 50% in the prior two weeks due to excitement over its ongoing Phase 3 trials for its covid-19 vaccine. The trial showed superiority vs. AstraZeneca (LON: AZN ) PLC ADR (NASDAQ: AZN ) vaccines, and the company believes that its vaccine, “the only inactivated vaccine candidate for COVID-19 in clinical trials in Europe,” could offer “benefits in terms of safety, cost, ease of manufacture and distribution” vs. current approved vaccines, and be adapted to future covid mutations.
The company aims to raise 100-116M, equivalent to roughly $116-$134M. Proceeds are intended, along with existing cash, to fund the covid-19 vaccine development, as well as development of its vaccine candidates against Lyme disease and Chikungunya. The offering would bring total shares up to 105-106M shares, depending on whether the underwriters exercise their option to buy.
Valneva shares plummeted in September on news the U.K. government canceled a contract to purchase Valneva’s COVID vaccine, and then retook its heights after the trial result announcement. Valneva's shares are still up more than 44% since the beginning of October, and more than 275% over one year.
Dynavax Technologies Corporation (NASDAQ: DVAX ), who is supplying the adjuvant CpG 1018 for Valneva’s covid vaccine, continues to trade near 52-week highs, up about 2% today.
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