Caught by repayment demand, cancer biotech Bind Therapeutics files for bankruptcy
- Cambridge, MA-based Bind Therapeutics is filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, the company announced on Monday. The decision was prompted by acceleration of payment on a $15 million loan from Hercules Technology.
- CEO Andrew Hirsch said Bind’s total cash and assets exceeded the loan amount, but filing for bankruptcy protection will give the company breathing room to pursue “strategic and financial alternatives.” Bind reported in March it had $36.9 million in cash and short-term investments as of December 31, 2015.
- After the news, Bind stock plunged under $1.00 in Monday trading, a far cry from its IPO price of $15 per share in 2013.
When Bind Therapeutics went public in 2013, all signs pointed to success. The company was co-founded by Robert Langer, from MIT, and Omid Farokhzad, from Harvard Medical School.
Bind, which develops nanoparticle drugs intended to more precisely deliver cyto-toxic agents to tumors, subsequently struck deals with some heavy-hitters, including Amgen, Pfizer, Merck, and AstraZeneca.
However, efforts to navigate its lead candidate, BIND-014, through the development process have been stymied by negative results in treatment of cervix, head, and neck cancers, notes Xconomy. Currently, BIND-014 is being tested for treatment of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
"We believe this decision is in the best interests of the company and its stockholders,” said Hirsch in a press release. “The protections afforded by Chapter 11 provide for an orderly process and additional time that enables us to pursue the strategic and financial alternatives that are in process. The filing minimizes the impact from the recent demand by our lender, Hercules Technology III, L.P, for accelerated repayment of our outstanding loan."
Although BIND-014 has not been successful so far in clinical testing, Bind is also a victim of a steady slump in the biotech market over the past year. After Bind went public in 2013, the Nasdaq Biotechnology Index jumped by over 30%. Since the market began to slide, a number of biotechs have lost momentum and financing as investors have become more conservative.
Bind said its bankruptcy options could include the licensing or sale of the company's technologies.
- xconomy.com Pressured by a Lender, Bind Files for Bankruptcy
- Wall Street Journal Bind Therapeutics Seeks Chapter 11 Protection After Default