Opthea (ASX:OPT), a developer of novel biologic therapies for the treatment of eye diseases, has completed a $45 million capital raise.
The company said the proceeds will support acceleration and diversification of the its clinical development strategy for OPT-302, its novel VEGF-C/D ‘Trap’ therapy for wet age-related macular degeneration and diabetic macular edema.
The capital raising consisted of a $35 million placement and a 1 for 14 pro-rata non-renounceable entitlement offer, comprising a $7 million institutional component that closed on 5 April and a $3 million retail component that closed 24 April.
New shares subscribed for under the Retail Entitlement Offer are expected to be issued on 3 May and will commence trading on the Australian Securities Exchange on 4 May. New shares will rank equally in all respects with existing ordinary shares.
The capital raising was conducted at an offer price of $0.93 per share, representing a 14.8 per cent premium to the last traded share priced on 29 March.
According to the company, the capital raising was significantly oversubscribed with strong demand from new and existing shareholders, including international and domestic healthcare dedicated investment funds from Australia, US and UK.
“The strong support we received for this transaction follows the reporting of positive data from our Phase 1/2A clinical trial with OPT-302 in wet AMD patients, which exceeded our expectations. We are now well capitalised into 2021 which positions us to advance this next generation treatment to multiple clinical inflection points,” said Dr Megan Baldwin, CEO and managing director.
"Outcomes from the Phase 1/2A clinical trial demonstrated safety of intravitreally administered OPT-302, as well as improvements in visual acuity and reductions in retinal fluid in all patient groups investigated, suggesting additional clinical benefit with more complete suppression of VEGF-A and VEGF-C/D," said the company.
"On the basis of this data, Opthea is now actively progressing plans to initiate an approximately 350 patient Phase 2B wet AMD clinical trial, as well as additional Phase 2A clinical studies in DME and wet AMD patients who have been previously treated with anti-VEGF-A therapy and experienced a sub-optimal clinical response. Opthea plans to initiate patient recruitment into the Phase 2B wet AMD and Phase 2A clinical trials in 2H 2017."