Biotech is "back to normal," with record revenues from initial public offerings falling away to a lackluster end of the year.
The sector managed to rack up $2.5 billion through 33 IPOs so far this year, a record take representing more than the previous 5 years’ IPOs combined, but the momentum dwindled away and "enthusiasm for the sector has vanished," according to market analysts at Renaissance Capital IPO Center.
Already most of the biotech IPOs planned for the end of the year have been postponed, including for San Diego, Calif.-based Vital Therapies, and the affection for early-stage companies has reversed.
"The strong pricings of 2013 biotechs earlier in the year may have reflected new promise in the sector after several discouraging years, and it may have been driven in part by momentum and a growing contribution from non-traditional biotech investors," according to the Renaissance memo. "As we close out 2013, it will be interesting to see if the 2013 biotech breakout was a merely an anomaly or if the recent about-face in sentiment indicates a change back to the norm that existed for much of the past decade."