Cambridge Endoscopic Devices yesterday filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, saying it owes creditors $17 million but has assets of only $3 million.
The Framingham, Mass.-based medical device company, which made medical devices used for single-incision laparoscopy procedures, closed a debt-and-options offering worth $2.9 million in January 2014.
A Chapter 11 bankruptcy allows the organization to re-form after settling its current debts. Cambridge Endo’s filing lists 4 parties as major creditors, including White Sand Beach (owed more than $8.1 million, $2.6 million secured) and angel investor Walter Winshall, who’s owed $2.9 million.
Cambridge Endo also owes $1.7 million to Joong Hahn and a total of nearly $1 million to former Cerapedics CEO Paul Mraz, according to the filing with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for Massachusetts.
The company ran into trouble after the Affordable Care Act passed in 2010, according to the filing, as hospitals’ concern with procedure costs conflicted with the more-expensive procedure involving Cambridge Endo’s devices.
“The debtor’s sales effort required to establish meaningful sales in the face of this economic hurdle was more significant than could be justified by the potential sales. Faced with this difficult business environment, and with ongoing operating losses, the debtor in July 2013 turned its efforts toward a prospective sale of the company,” according to the filing.
But despite hiring investment bank MedCap Advisors and soliciting more than 40 potential acquirers, no buyer could be found. That prompted Cambridge Endo to ink a “stalking horse” deal with main creditor White Sands Beach, under which WSB would fund the Chapter 11 procedure with $100,000 in cash. White Sand “hopes that a number of potential bidders emerge paying a greater amount for the debtor’s assets than WSB’s stalking horse bid,” according to the filing.
“Should a sale to a higher and better cash bidder occur, WSB has agreed to share that upside with the debtor’s creditors,” according to the filing.
Woojin Lee, an MIT mechanical engineering professor who previously co-founded Norwood’s endoVia Medical (which sold in 2005 to Hansen Medical (NSDQ:HNSN)) launched Cambridge Endo in 2004. The company received regulatory approval to market its Autonomy Laparo-Angle device in the United States in May 2006 (it’s also available in the European Union). Early investors include Collaborative Seed and Growth Partners LLC of Newton.