Affimed seizes on stock pop with filing for $40M offering

Late on April 24, as a good day's trading for Affimed Therapeutics ($AFMD) turned great, the company's share price passed into the $11 to $13 range it hoped to hit when it went public in September. The next business day, Affimed filed for a follow-on offering to raise up to $40 million (€37 million).

Affimed CEO Adi Hoess

Raising the cash would move Affimed's bank balance past the level it was aiming for when it first filed for its IPO, at which time it hoped to add around $75 million to its coffers. The IPO fell well short though--Affimed raised $56 million in a $7-a-share offering--and its stock price has bounced around the $6 mark for most of its life on Nasdaq. That all changed on April 24 when Affimed shot up 42%, despite not making any announcements.

The surge could be tied to AstraZeneca's ($AZN) deal with Innate Pharma (EPA:IPH), although the link seems scant justification for a 42% jump. Affimed and Innate both have natural killer (NK) cell programs. As AstraZeneca was willing to pay $250 million upfront to access Innate's anti-NKG2A antibody, it is possible to read the deal as a positive for Affimed and the likelihood of its NK program attracting a deep-pocketed partner. Whatever the reason, the outcome is the same for Affimed: Its shares started traded at close to the value it placed on them in its original IPO filing.

Heidelberg, Germany-based Affimed is aiming to cash in on the uptick in its fortunes and gather more money for its clinical development programs. The company is yet to specify how much it will allocate to its various programs--or finalize the terms of the offering--but its top priority is to speed its lead candidate through clinical development. Affimed is running a Phase IIa trial of AFM13--a CD30-targeting antibody designed to activate NK-cells--in patients with Hodgkin lymphoma.

- read the SEC filing