Pharmaceutical Developer Durata Trades Up 8.1% Post-IPO

July 19, 2012 - Dow Jones VentureWire

By Lynn Cowan

Early-stage pharmaceutical developer Durata Therapeutics Inc. (DRTX) made modest early trading gains on Thursday, its first day as a public company.

The company's stock opened at $10 a share on the Nasdaq, up 11% from its initial public offering price of $9; it was recently changing hands at $9.73, up 8.1%. Durata sold 7 million shares--up from its original plans for 6.25 million shares--below its expected range of $11 to $13.

Durata, which was formed in 2009, is developing drugs for infectious diseases and acute illnesses. The company has no products approved for sale by regulators; its most advanced drug candidate, which is in Phase 3 clinical trials, is a once-a-week intravenous antibiotic to treat acute bacterial skin infections. The company acquired the rights to the drug, called Dalbavancin, when it acquired Vicuron Pharmaceuticals from Pfizer Inc. (PFE) in December 2009.

The company has never been profitable and doesn't expect to generate product revenues before 2014 at the earliest.

Durata is the second early-stage drug developer to go public in the last two months; the first, biopharmaceutical company Tesaro Inc. (TSRO), priced within its expected range and traded slightly higher during its debut in June.