BG Medicine scuttles IPO – again

BG Medicine logo

BG Medicine Inc. scuttled its second initial public offering, having failed to set a price for the deal this week, nearly three years after it withdrew its first IPO.

The Waltham, Mass.-based diagnostics firm was expected to announce a price of between $13 and $15 per share this week for the 4.8 million share offering, but scrapped those plans, according to Dow Jones Newswires.

The most recent IPO was scaled back from plans BG announced in January for an $86.3 million offering. The company’s shares were to have traded on the NASDAQ exchange under the BGMD symbol.

Observers speculated last week that BG would price the offering some time this week. The company had planned to use about $25 million of the IPO proceeds to support the commercial launch of its BGM Galectin-3 biomarker test, according to its most recent filing with the federal Securities & Exchange Commission. The test, designed to evaluate risk of heart attack, won 510(k) clearance from the Food & Drug Administration last month and CE Mark approval in the European Union in October 2009.

Flagship Ventures is the company’s largest backer, owning a 44.4 percent stake. Flagship partner Noubar Afeyan is the chairman of BG’s board, according to the SEC filing. Other investors include Gilde Europe Food and Agriculture Fund BV, GE Asset Management, Humana Inc., Koninklijke Philips Electronics NV, Legg Mason Capital management and SMALLCAP World Fund.

BG reported a net loss of $13.8 million, or $1.11 per share on a pro forma basis, on revenues of $620,000 during the nine months ended Sept. 30, according to the filing. That compares with a loss of $11.9 million, or $1.29 per share, on revenue of $8.1 million during the same period last year. For the year, the company brought in about $8.5 million in revenues with losses of $16.1 million.

BG Medicine has said an automated version of its galectin-3 test is necessary for it "to achieve broad customer acceptance and clinical adoption," according to The Wall Street Journal. It’s working with Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT), Alere Inc. (NYSE:ALR) and bioMerieux SA (EPA:BIM) to incorporate the test those comapnies’ automated lab instruments and it plans file for FDA clearance for the automated test by the fourth quarter of 2011, according to Dow Jones.

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