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Amarantus closes Equity Funding Facility
10-13-2011
by Kelsey Kaustinen  |  Email the author
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SUNNYVALE, CA—Amarantus BioSciences, Inc. has announced the closing of a $10 million Equity Funding Facility with Centurion Private Equity, LLC. Amarantus will be able to draw down on the equity funding facility over the course of the next 36 months in tranches of up to $750,000. This ability will be subject to certain conditions and limitations laid out in the company's agreement, including limitations based on the price and trading volume of Amarantus' common stock, upon the successful registration of the common shares underlying the facility with the Securities & Exchange Commission. Amarantus is a biotechnology company working on the development of MANF, a first-in-class, disease-modifying therapeutic protein that addresses cell death, or apoptosis.
 
"This Equity Funding Facility provided by Centurion Private Equity is one of the most flexible financing tools available to public biotechnology companies seeking to raise capital," Dr. Samuel Herschkowitz, special advisor to the Amarantus Board of Directors, said in a press release. "The strong commercial potential of the MANF platform for Parkinson's and other apoptosis-related disorders will require flexible financing tools as the Company lays out its corporate strategy for rapid product registration in the U.S. and abroad.
 
"Centurion's financings will provide the Company with strategic capital to fund its development programs while maintaining working capital flexibility in various fundraising market conditions," Herschkowitz continued. "We believe this facility will likely attract additional financing sources for the Company seeking to leverage the value of this facility."  
 
MANF is a protein known to correct protein misfolding, one of the leading causes of apoptosis. This ability had afforded MANF a good deal of interest as a potential basis for therapeutic products for the treatment of disease. Currently, the lead MANF product development effort is focused on discovering a therapy for Parkinson's disease, with funding provided by a research grant from the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research.
 
Amarantus currently has an inventory of 88 cell lines known as "PhenoGuard Cell Lines," and MANF was the first therapeutic protein discovered from a PhenoGuard Cell Line. The company anticipates that additional proteins with therapeutic viability, especially with relation to the central nervous system, will be discovered within the PhenoGuard Cell Lines. Amarantus is currently examining the potential of MANF as a treatment for both Parkinson's disease and ischemic heart disease.  
 
"This commitment by Centurion Private Equity provides tremendous validation of the value proposition that Amarantus represents for public market healthcare investors," Martin D. Cleary, chairman and chief executive officer of Amarantus, noted in a press release. "The Company intends to strategically draw down on this facility in a manner that protects the best interests of our shareholders and use the proceeds for core product development, material transactions such as licensing, mergers, acquisition and other relevant value-added business development opportunities. We intend to seek to identify additional sources of capital to fund the Company's development programs in the near-term. This facility provides a compelling rationale to attract the interest of additional institutional investors seeking to mitigate financing risk."  
 
"Centurion Private Equity is pleased to enter into this financing agreement with Amarantus," said Paul Gorski, Private Equity Manager at Centurion, in a press release. "Centurion is pleased to partner with Amarantus to unlock the tremendous potential of the MANF platform."
 
 
SOURCE: Amarantus BioSciences press release
 
Code: E10131101

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