London corporate partners William Charnley and Tom O’Neill handled the listing on the Alternative Investment Market for the Californian company with support from partners in the US while Covington & Burling advised from San Francisco. K&L Gates’ London corporate chief Paul Tetlow advised Cenkos Securities, the nominated adviser and broker to Verseon. The move marked a turnaround from the stream of European drugs companies listing in the US to raise money for expansion.
US securities specialist O’Neill joined King & Spalding in November from Linklaters last year as part of the firm’s recent expansion in the City, which has continued into 2015 with the hire of Latham & Watkins’ former European vice chair of tax Daniel Friel in March and Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson’s London disputes head Nick Cherryman last month.
The listing gives Verseon a market capitalisation of £303m with it planning to use £61m to advance its current drug programmes, expand its drug pipeline into additional disease indications and develop its drug discovery platform.
The deal follows the work done by Markus Bauman, a US securities specialist who also arrived last November from Latham & Watkins, on mobile food ordering company Delivery Hero’s $589m purchase of Turkish peer Yemeksepeti which completed on Friday (8 May 2015). Bauman worked alongside Elisabeth Baltay who was brought in from Bingham McCutchen in October 2014.