Science 37 Is Going Public Via LifeSci II SPAC Merger
(Bloomberg) -- Science 37 Inc., a digital operating system that facilitates clinical trials, has agreed to go public through a reverse merger with a blank-check company.
The Los Angeles-based firm will merge with special purpose acquisition company LifeSci Acquisition II Corp., according to an announcement Friday, which confirmed a Bloomberg News report. The deal values Science 37 at $1.05 billion, including debt.
The transaction will include a $200 million private placement from investors including BlackRock Inc., Lux Capital, Mubadala Investment Co., PPD Inc. and the SPAC sponsor’s affiliate, LifeSci Venture Partners, the statement showed.
Science 37, whose name references the normal human body temperature in Celsius, allows patients to participate in trials of new drugs and medical equipment from their homes.
Researchers use its platform to conduct telehealth check-ins, as well as for administrative tasks such as securing patient consent agreements, according to its website. The company lists Amgen Inc. and Genentech Inc. among its investors and partners.
Having to go to a specific site for these trials can often deter patients, Science 37 Chief Executive Officer David Coman said in an interview.
“One of the other big issues for traditional site-based models is that they’re typically in neighborhoods that don’t get the under-served patient population,” he said. “An average trial will have a third less diversity in it than the standard population.”
LifeSci Acquisition II, backed by boutique investment bank LifeSci Capital, raised $80.1 million in November in an initial public offering. It said in its listing documents that it was seeking targets in the biopharma, medical technology, digital health and health-care services sectors.
The vehicle only offered shares and no warrants, which are a common feature in SPACs.
Its stock rose 6.5% to $10.75 at 11:04 a.m. in New York on Friday.
“The SPAC marketplace ebbs and flows, ups and downs,” said Andrew McDonald, chief executive officer of LifeSci Acquisition II. “We recognize that it was going to be a competitive environment for SPACs and that we would have to differentiate ourselves.”
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