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December 7, 2017

Quanterix Set to Launch IPO, with Expansion and SR-X Rollout in Mind

  • Quanterix today plans to launch an initial public offering (IPO) of at least $64 million, with the proceeds set to be used in part toward expanding commercial operations and supporting the planned rollout next year of its new Quanterix SR-X Ultra-Sensitive Biomarker Detection System™.

    Gross proceeds of the IPO could rise to $73.75 million if underwriters of the offering exercise in full their 30-day option to purchase up to 641,280 additional shares of common stock at the IPO price, less the underwriting discount.

    Should that happen, Quanterix’s net proceeds from the IPO would rise from approximately $43.9 million to approximately $50.8 million, based on the offering price of $15 per share—the mid-point of its pricing range of between $14 and $16 per share.

    "We are a life sciences company that has developed a next generation, ultra-sensitive digital immunoassay platform that advances precision health for life sciences research and diagnostics. Our platform enables customers to reliably detect protein biomarkers in extremely low concentrations in blood, serum and other fluids that, in many cases, are undetectable using conventional, analog immunoassay technologies," Quanterix stated in an amended S-1 registration submission filed on Monday,

    "These capabilities provide our customers with insight into the role of protein biomarkers in human health that has not been possible with other existing technologies and enable researchers to better characterize the continuum between health and disease," the company added."

    Quanterix also said that proceeds from the IPO will be used in part toward an expansion of commercial operations in and outside the U.S.—including a potential move to a larger corporate headquarters “in order to have the appropriate infrastructure to support the increase in our employee base in addition to an increase in our manufacturing footprint.”

    The company is headquartered in Lexington, MA.

    “We believe opportunities may exist from time to time to expand our current business through acquisitions or in-licenses of complementary companies or technologies. While we have no current agreements, commitments, or understandings for any specific acquisitions or in-licenses at this time, we may use a portion of the net proceeds for these purposes,” Quanterix stated in the amended registration.

    Quanterix’s commercial operations will be expanded next year when Quanterix plans to roll out SR-X, a system designed for multiplex detection of up to six analytes per well.

    In a case-study poster available on Quanterix’s website, SR-X was used to simultaneously measure six cytokine markers with significance in inflammation and immune system regulation, as well as immuno-oncology. The panel included interleukin (IL)-10, IL-12p70, IL-17A, IL-6, tumor necrosis factor-α (TNFα), and interferon-γ (IFNγ)

    Quanterix SR-X also allows researchers to design assays to detect both protein and nucleic acid biomarkers direct from blood without the need for complex preanalytical extraction and amplification steps, the company said.

  • Simoa Improvements Planned

    Quanterix SR-X uses the company’s single-molecule array (Simoa) fully automated immunoassay platform with instruments designed for multiplexing and custom assay capability. With SR-X, a menu of more than 70 Simoa assay kits will be available to measure biomarkers with higher sensitivity than standard immunoassay methods, with the goal of enabling detection of both normal and acute levels with high precision across a range of sample types.

    Simoa technology and instruments will be improved using partial proceeds from the IPO, the company said. Simoa is a digital form of enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), designed to trap and seal individual immunocomplexes on paramagnetic beads in thousands of femtoliter-sized wells in arrays found on the Simoa discs. The isolation of individual bead immunocomplexes is intended to allow the enzyme that is bound to the capture antibody to produce sufficient fluorescence in each well to be detectable, even when just a single molecule is present.

    The company’s Simoa HD-1 Analyzer, designed for precise measure of protein biomarkers, produces a map of the array—each containing more than 200,000 wells—with each well capable of being digitally analyzed as either “on” (containing a target molecule) or “off.” Simoa’s proprietary algorithm converts the measurement into a concentration that reaches femtomolar levels for most analytes—delivering, according to Quanterix, an average a 1000-fold improvement in sensitivity over current immunoassay techniques.

    Quanterix said IPO proceeds will also be used toward:

    • Developing additional assays, including assays for nucleic acid detection;
    • Pursuing regulatory approvals or clearances to develop instruments, assay kits, and consumables “in areas outside of life science research, including potentially laboratory-developed tests (LDTs), in vitro diagnostics (IVD) tests, and other markets,” and developing those products in accordance with such approvals or clearances;
    • Pursuing acquisitions or other business development opportunities;
    • Generating working capital, and other general corporate purposes.

    Shares of Quanterix are set to start trading on The NASDAQ Global Market under the ticker symbol “QTRX.”

    The IPO is expected to close on December 11, subject to customary closing conditions.

    J.P. Morgan Securities, Leerink Partners, and Cowen and Company are joint book-running managers for the IPO, while BTIG and Evercore Group serve as co-managers.

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