Billionaires drive Malin to €330M IPO, Push for EU JOBS Act, RNAi stock jumps on PhIIa data

Welcome to the latest edition of our weekly EuroBiotech Report. This week, Malin pulled in money from national wealth funds, billionaires and others on its way to a blockbuster €330 million IPO, putting it among the biggest ever European biotech listings. The investment vehicle--which was set up by Kelly Martin and other former Elan executives--then closed up 7% on its first day of trading. Malin is targeting pre-IPO biotechs, a group that will find it easier to access public markets if a European financial consortium gets its way. The consortium is lobbying for a European equivalent of the JOBS Act, the U.S. legislative rethink that opened the current biotech IPO window. Silence Therapeutics (AIM:SLN) made the switch to life on public markets back in 2005 and enjoyed one of its better days this week. Shares in the London-based company jumped 20% following the release of Phase IIa data on its RNAi therapeutic in pancreatic cancer patients. A pair of novel VC funds raised money. France's Seventure Partners added €25 million to its microbiome investment fund, bringing the total under management up to €100 million. And in Poland, a small team of investment and pharma veterans joined together to create the country's first institutional fund dedicated to life sciences. The fund has €42 million in the bank and a Poland-centric investment remit. And more. Nick Taylor (email | Twitter)

1. Billionaires line up to back Malin's €330M IPO

Ex-Elan CEO Kelly Martin and his chums have persuaded some very rich people to back Malin's IPO. The list of investors in the IPO--which surpassed expectations to raise €330 million ($357 million)--includes the fund set up by SAS founder Jim Goodnight and Canada's wealthy and influential Tory family.

2. Finance giants lobby for JOBS-style reforms to EU IPO laws

A consortium of financial trade groups has begun lobbying the European Commission to implement the sort of changes that triggered the U.S. biotech IPO boom. The European IPO Task Force specifically wants politicians to slash the regulatory and administrative cost of going public by up to 50%, a move that would make it financially feasible for more small companies to float.

3. Investors hype Silence Therapeutics after cancer drug shows promise in PhIIa

Shares in Silence Therapeutics jumped more than 20% on the back of Phase IIa data. The small trial was designed primarily to assess the safety and pharmacokinetics of the pancreatic cancer drug, but that did little to deter investors from latching on to some encouraging early efficacy data.

4. Seventure adds €25M to microbiome investment fund

Seventure Partners has added €25 million ($27 million) to its microbiome investment fund, bringing the total under management to €100 million. The move ups the financial firepower of the fund--which has invested in 5 companies since it started late in 2013--at a time when microbiome R&D is starting to take off.

5. VC vets break new ground with $42M Polish life science fund

Joint Polish Investment Fund Management is claiming a first. The Warsaw, Poland-based group has reportedly become the country's first institutional venture capital fund dedicated to life sciences after it held the initial closing of its $42 million (€38 million) investment vehicle.

And more articles of note >>