Novan, a biotech company focused on dermatology, has recently lowered its IPO to $45 million. Given the difficulty smaller biotechs have encountered this year, Novan should perhaps consider itself lucky that it is even able to go for an IPO. After all, a considerable number of smaller biotech companies were forced to get rid of their public offerings altogether this year. It was just last month that the Durham, North Carolina-based company announced plans to aim for a $60 million IPO. Chances are the people at Novan aren’t particularly thrilled about the value of $45 million, which they stated they were going for in their latest SEC filing.
Novan intends to go about this by offering 3.75 million shares within the price range of $11 to $13. This would have a market value of approximately $181 million at the midpoint of its proposed range. Novan plans to list as $NOVN on Nasdaq.
Novan has been using its nitric oxide platform in order to treat skin ailments like warts, acne, fungal infections, dermatitis, and psoriasis. The 10-year-old company stated that it is quickly advancing programs to treat five dermatological conditions that currently have significant unmet needs. These diseases are prevalent in dermatology and therefore represent a large market opportunity of more than 150 million American patients.
When explaining the choice to focus on dermatology, Novan said that every major cell type that comprises the three layers of the skin can produce nitric oxide at various rates. The cells play a key role in organizing the skin’s ability to repair itself and act as a barrier. Novan’s platform allows the company to tweak the release of nitric oxide and cause its wide range of beneficial effects. This is useful for when host systems fail, or when they are bombarded with invading microorganisms. Novan feels that its platform is ideal for disrupting the growing dermatology market. IMS Health estimates that the dermatology market is worth about $28 billion in the U.S. each year.
Novan believes that medical dermatology has been stagnant for decades in terms of new innovations. For over 30 years, the use of retinoids and antibiotics to treat acne vulgaris has remained the same. Novan feels that the nitric oxide platform will be able to address the limitation of the current treatment. This will allow the company to set the bar higher for dermatological care.