Archive by category | - Adam Bristol

Fast start, not short course

Fast start, not short course

Social networking website LinkedIn went public in May and the share price more than doubled on the first day of trading. By all accounts, it was a very successful IPO: LinkedIn raised over $350M in an offering that valued the company around $3B, and the existing and IPO investors could book a substantial, immediate return. In contrast to the hope of a mere resuscitation of IPOs in biotech sector, murmurs of another tech bubble ensued after the LinkedIn offering. Other tech IPOs in 2011, namely Zillow and Qihoo 360 Technology, also enjoyed extraordinary first trading days, appreciating 79% and 134%, respectively.  Read more

The Entrepreneur’s Bookshelf

The Entrepreneur’s Bookshelf

Joyce’s Ulysses. Huxley’s Brave New World. Faulkner’s The Sound and the Fury. Some of the most important books ever published in the English language. Or so I’ve heard. I’ve never read them. Of course, I want to read them. I suspect most of us have a reading list we apparently only manage to add to.  Read more

Pharma as Shareholder

Pharma as Shareholder

A funny thing happened in the stock market last week. Signals for what eventually became an acquisition of a small cap biotech company Icagen (ICGN) were disclosed in an SEC filing because the acquirer, Pfizer (PFE), was a large shareholder. The events struck me as unusual because, a) it’s rare to see pharma publicly tipping their hand regarding business development activities, and b) it seems as though there are very few instances in which a pharma takes an equity position in a public company.  Read more

Would Graham and Dodd have avoided small cap biotech?

Would Graham and Dodd have avoided small cap biotech?

Benjamin Graham and David Dodd are synonymous with an investing strategy called “value investing.” As outlined in their classic 1934 book Security Analysis, value investing involves investing only in securities that the stock market has significantly undervalued. Warren Buffett is the most famous practitioner of this approach, and millions of other investors apply aspects of value investing to their own portfolios. Graham died in 1976, the year Genentech was founded. Would he have applied his methodology to the biotech industry? I doubt it.  Read more

Who Cares About the IPO Market?

Who Cares About the IPO Market?

No doubt you’ve heard that the IPO market for biotech companies has been especially weak the last two years. Few companies went public in 2008 and 2009, and those that did raised less money than expected, at lower prices, and with significant insider participation or other sweeteners. But the IPO environment seems to be thawing, with more companies expected to go public in the coming months, which leads to the question: Is this really such a good thing?  Read more