CG Oncology’s upsized $380M IPO is first biotech to go public in 2024


CG Oncology’s upsized $380M IPO is first biotech to go public in 2024

Published: Jan 25, 2024

By Tristan Manalac


CG Oncology on Thursday morning started trading on the Nasdaq after announcing its $380 million upsized initial public offering, putting 20 million shares of its common stock up for sale for $19 apiece.

The bladder cancer-focused biotech’s expected $380 million haul is in gross proceeds before taking out commissions, underwriting discounts and other related expenses. CG Oncology is trading on the Nasdaq Global Select Market with the ticker symbol CGON. The IPO is expected to close on Jan. 29, subject to customary closing conditions.

CG Oncology’s IPO haul is much larger than what it expected last week, when it estimated just over $180 million after it set a mid-range, per-share price of $17. The biotech could still bring in more money from its offering, as underwriters have 30 more days to pick up an additional three million shares of its common stock.

Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and Cantor are joint book-running managers for the offering, while LifeSci Capital is serving as its co-manager.

CG Oncology only has one asset: the late-stage cretostimogene grenadenorepvec. The candidate is a targeted oncolytic immunotherapy that works by infiltrating cancer cells, replicating inside them and triggering their cell death. The newly formed cretostimogene grenadenorepvec molecules then go on to target and kill other cancer cells, while cytokines and other antigens released by dying tumors help prime T-cells and recruit them to also fight against the malignancy.

According to the biotech’s website, cretostimogene grenadenorepvec is designed to “preferentially replicate” in cells in which the retinoblastoma gene pathway is defective—a typical characteristic of most urothelial carcinomas.

CG Oncology is developing cretostimogene grenadenorepvec for high-risk, BCG-unresponsive non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC) as well as intermediate-risk NMIBC–for both of which it is currently conducting Phase III assessments. The candidate is likewise in a Phase II trial in combination with Merck’s Keytruda (pembrolizumab) for the treatment of high-risk, BCG-unresponsive NMIBC.

The biotech is also planning to start another Phase II study for the candidate, this time for high-risk, BCG-naïve and BCG-experienced NMIBC.

CG Oncology’s Nasdaq debut on Thursday opens this year’s batch of IPOs, with about half a dozen other biotechs waiting in the wings. Among them is fellow cancer biotech ArriVent Biopharma, which on Monday set its sights on a potential $156 million offering by selling over eight million shares for $17 to $19 apiece.

Other IPO hopefuls early in 2024 include MetagenomiKyverna Therapeutics, Alto Neuroscience and Fractyl Health.

Source: BioSpace