Amid a boom in IPOs, partially fueled due to high stock valuation overall and a particular interest in biotech stocks, another biotechnology company has filed its documents in a bid to go public. Sana Biotechnology filed to go public on Jan. 13. It's a biotech company that focuses on curing diseases by developing gene and cell therapies.
The company creates novel medicines that improve patient outcomes. In 2020, Sana Biotechnology licensed technology from Harvard University to help with its efforts to develop off-the-shelf cell therapies.
Sana Biotechnology's IPO
Sana Biotechnology filed to go public on Jan. 13. The company seeks to raise nearly $150 million through the IPO. Sana Biotechnology is still a preclinical company without a single drug in a clinical trial. The company mentioned in the prospectus, “Our long-term aspirations are to be able to control or modify any gene in the body, to replace any cell that is damaged or missing, and to markedly improve access to cellular and gene-based medicines.”
The company plans to trade on Nasdaq under the ticker symbol "SANA." Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, and Bank of America are leading the offering. A definitive IPO date for the company hasn't been determined yet.
Sana Biotechnology IPO valuation
Sana Biotechnology raised $700 million in initial financing in June 2020 through venture capital. The venture capital included investors like Arch Venture Partners, Flagship Pioneering, the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, and Baillie Gifford.
According to Business Insider, Sana commanded a $2.77 billion valuation after the 2020 raise. It was the second-highest valuation among all private biotechs, according to Silicon Valley Bank's annual industry report. The company hasn't set the pricing terms of the IPO yet.
How to buy Sana Biotechnology pre-IPO shares
Sana Biotechnology shares are still privately held. The share will be offered to the general public through an IPO, which means the shares are pre-IPO. These shares don’t trade on stock exchanges and might not have a readily defined price. So, how can you buy pre-IPO stock? While earlier pre-IPO investing was limited to hedge funds, vat equity firms, and accredited investors, the SharesPost and EquityZen platforms allow individual investors to buy pre-IPO shares.
Still, it isn't easy to invest in a pre-IPO stock. Investors can talk to their stockbroker or an investment firm that focuses on pre-IPO shares or fundraisings. They can give you suggestions and guidance on how to invest in companies before they go public.