WuXi Biologics Said Poised to Price $510 Million IPO at Top End

  • Contract drugmaker plans to sell IPO shares at HK$20.60 each
  • Biologics market projected to exceed $223.7 billion by 2021

WuXi Biologics (Cayman) Inc., a Chinese contract drug manufacturer, and its existing investors are poised to raise HK$3.98 billion ($510 million) after pricing a Hong Kong initial public offering at the top end of a marketed range, people with knowledge of the matter said.

The company plans to price the sale of 193 million shares at HK$20.60 each, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. WuXi Biologics offered the shares at HK$18.60 to HK$20.60 apiece.

WuXi Biologics is raising capital for expansion amid rapidly rising demand for biologic drugs, which are made from live substances and used to treat conditions like cancer or rheumatoid arthritis. The company, based in eastern China’s Jiangsu province, aims to use the IPO proceeds to construct new facilities in Wuxi and Shanghai, its prospectus shows.

The increased capacity would help the company capitalize on a global market for these medicines that’s projected to exceed $223.7 billion by 2021, according to a Bloomberg Intelligence analysis. Bank of America Corp., Morgan Stanley and China Merchants Securities Co. are joint sponsors of the WuXi Biologics IPO.

WuXi Biologics plans to start trading June 13, according to an earlier exchange filing. A Hong Kong-based external spokeswoman for the company declined to comment.

The parent company of WuXi Biologics, known as WuXi AppTec, is planning to seek about 20 billion yuan ($2.9 billion) in a Shanghai initial public offering, people familiar with the matter said in March. The A-share listing is expected to be completed this year, according to the people.

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