Appili Therapeutics Inc., the Halifax company dedicated to fighting infectious diseases, has raised $10.25 million by selling shares and warrants to mainly institutional investors.
The fundraising round – the company’s first since it listed on the TSX Venture exchange in June – comes after the company has undergone a series of changes in senior executives and its board. The company will use the money to advance the four drug candidates in its portfolio.
“Funds from this offering put Appili in a very solid position to keep delivering on the value-driving milestones in our pipeline,” said Appili CEO Armand Balboni in a statement. “We are especially pleased that this round welcomed a myriad of new shareholders to the Appili investor base, alongside the continued support of many of our long-standing shareholders.”
The latest fundraising is almost triple the $3.6 million it raised early in 2019, ahead of its IPO. The company’s statement said it sold 12.8 million units of securities to investors at 80 cents each. Each unit comprised one share and a half warrant, which is similar to an option. Each of these warrants allows the owner to purchase one additional share at $1.23 any time after Feb. 20, 2023.
Appili shares closed Monday at 76 cents. They have had a turbulent ride since listing at about 80 cents a share last June. They lost more than half their value in their first two months in the public market, before climbing to a peak close of 97 cents in late January and settling in recent weeks.
The investors buying into the deal included Bloom Burton Securities Inc., Mackie Research Capital Corp., Haywood Securities Inc. and Industrial Alliance Securities Inc. Bloom Burton is a Toronto financial boutique that has backed Appili since its founding.
With the current deal, Bloom Burton now owns about 30.9 percent of Appili, down from its 42.7 percent before the transaction. (These figures are given on a non-diluted basis, meaning they ignore the potential exercise of the warrants or other derivatives.)
In recent months, Appili has undergone several senior management changes. Balboni, who had been the Chief Science Officer, replaced Founder Kevin Sullivan as Chief Executive Officer in December. Last month, the company named Xenon Pharmaceuticals President Ian Mortimer as its board chair, replacing Steve Nicolle, who resigned. It also named medical and regulatory affairs expert Juergen Froehlich to the board.
Now the company is focused on moving forward with the four drug candidates in its pipeline:
- ATI-1501 – This drug, which treats a condition called clostridium difficile infection in children, is set to be Appili’s first product on the market. The company is planning to sell it in the U.S. via the marketing agreement it signed in December with Hauppauge, NY-based Saptalis Pharmaceuticals LLC.
- ATI-2307 – Appili agreed in November to purchase the rights to develop this anti-fungal drug, which can be used to fight such hard-to-cure afflictions as Cryptococcal meningitis and Candida infections. The company is now preparing ATI-2307 for its Phase 2 clinical trials.
- ATI-1701 – The team is in the process of compiling critical proof-of-concept one-year data for this vaccine candidate, which aims to combat antibiotic-resistant viruses. This data will be an essential component in regulatory submissions to the Food and Drug Administration in the U.S.
- ATI-1503 – The company is selecting a clinical candidate for its “negamycin antibiotic program”, which it hopes will fight drug-resistant viruses. The company has received a US$3 million grant from the U.S. Department of Defense to advance this drug.
Said Balboni: “We are well-funded and galvanized to progress our assets against these urgent threats in the anti-infective space.”