Esperion Therapeutics seeking $70 million in IPO filing
In documents filed Tuesday with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the company declared that it is setting a $70 million goal for the initial public offering and will be traded on the Nasdaq Stock Market under the symbol ESPR.
Melanie Maxwell | AnnArbor.com file photo
When Pfizer closed its Ann Arbor offices in 2007, it also shut down work on the drugs that Esperion had been developing. The following year, Newton raised more than $22 million to buy back the intellectual property and re-launched the company.
Newton stepped aside as CEO of Esperion in January when Tim Mayleben, who had been the chief operating officer and chief financial officer of the original Esperion, returned to lead the company.
Esperion is currently focused on clinical tests of a drug that would lower “bad” LDL cholesterol without the use of statins, which cause a negative reaction in some patients. Mayleben previously told AnnArbor.com that the drug, ETC-1002, is on track to be submitted to the FDA for approval in approximately three years.
“We’re pursuing a path that would allow us to take this drug through [the FDA] approval process and onto the market ourselves,” he said at the time.
In 2000, the first Esperion filed an IPO looking to raise $138 million. The company was listed on Nasdaq for three years before Pfizer purchased the company for $35 per share.
The pharmaceutical giant paid a premium to acquire the company. According to a CNN article, the purchase price was 54 percent higher than Esperion’s average closing share trading price over the 20 days before the company was purchased.
In its current form, Esperion employs 13 people, many of whom worked for the first Esperion and Pfizer, at the Michigan Life Science and Innovation Center that was also formerly a Pfizer property.
The company has raised nearly $57 million since its inception five years ago, including multiple investments from local venture capital fund Arboretum Ventures.
In its IPO filings, Esperion reported that as a development stage company it had net losses of $11.7 million in 2012 and $10.8 million in 2011. Like most pharmaceutical startups, the company will continue to operate at a loss until the drug is commercialized.
Mayleben declined to comment on the company’s filing.
Ben Freed covers business for AnnArbor.com. You can sign up here to receive Business Review updates every week. Reach out to Ben at 734-623-2528 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on twitter @BFreedinA2