Pet medicine developer Aratana Therapeutics Inc. raised $34.5 million in an initial public offering of 5.7 million shares priced well below the range it had expected.
The Kansas City, Kan., company said Thursday it priced the IPO at $6 per share. Aratana had said last month in Securities and Exchange Commission filings that it expected a range of $11 to $13 for a smaller offering of 4.3 million shares.
The banks managing the offering may buy an additional 862,500 shares to sell if there's demand, and that would increase the company's IPO proceeds.
Aratana has no approved products on the market but is developing potential pet medicines based on compounds created by human drug companies. It is developing pain treatments for both cats and dogs, including a potential treatment for pain and inflammation associated with osteoarthritis in dogs.
"Many pet owners consider pets important members of their families, and they have been increasingly willing to spend money to maintain the health of their pets," the company said in a registration statement filed with the SEC. "Consequently, pets are living longer and, as they do, are exhibiting many of the same signs and symptoms of disease as humans, such as arthritis, obesity, diabetes, cancer and heart disease."
The company posted a loss of $13.7 million for 2012, larger than its $4.6 million loss in 2011.
The company plans to use offering proceeds to help develop more drug candidates, among other purposes.
Aratana expects its shares to start trading Thursday under the ticker symbol "PETX."
Stifel and Lazard Capital Markets are acting as lead managers for the offering. William Blair, JMP Securities and Craig-Hallum Capital Group are acting as co-managers.