Biotech company Moderna just went public last week, raising $604M in what was the largest biotech IPO of all time.
At a price of $23 per share, Moderna [MRNA] sold over 26M shares, putting their valuation at $7.5B. Even though they hit a rough patch shortly after, the IPO is the latest in a string of record-breaking biotech public offerings this year.
Moderna specializes in so-called messenger RNA therapy, which is a form of treatment that uses a patient’s own cells to fight diseases. Assuming Moderna’s medicine works, the world now has “revolutionary” and new treatments for cancer.
So far in 2018, investors have pumped $7.1B into 60 biotech companies this year. That makes 2018 the 2nd biggest year ever for biotech, just behind 2014.
Moderna’s funding history
The other biotech companies that banked on IPOs this year were Solid Biosciences (valuation of $546.4M), ARMA Biosciences ($497.7M), Homology Medicines ($577.3M) and Allogene Therapeutics ($2.2B).
The $7.5B valuation was higher than the $7.1B reached by the company earlier in May 2010 when it raised $125M from Merck. Other investors include Sequoia Capital China, EDBI and ArrowMark Partners.
Moderna was founded in 2010 and was valued at $10.5M by the end of that year.
In the last eight years, the company’s valuation has risen by a whopping 679x. The above chart by Pitchbook shows the astonishing rise in Moderna’s valuation over the years.
In January 2014 Moderna raised $135M at a valuation of $880M and was a unicorn within the next twelve months. Till date the company has raised around $1.7B.
What’s Moderna all about?
As mentioned, Moderna is in early stage development of creating medicine using messenger RNA. In less layman’s terms, this transports genetic information from DNA to body cells enabling the production of proteins to express these genes.
Moderna aims to engineer messenger RNA with patients that have genetic diseases. This will communication with cells and produce potentially life-changing proteins.
As for the stock dropping…
Post-IPO, MRNA lost 19% in the first day of trading, dropping to $18.8 per share.
However, CNBC’s stock expert Jim Cramer wasn’t too worried about the drop, citing the upside of the technology and overall investor bullishness.
“It’s recession-proof at a time when many investors are now worried about a slowdown,” Cramer said. “It’s got an exciting concept and you can argue that messenger-RNA-based medicine could revolutionize health care.”
There are still some concerns raised over investing in Moderna shares. Like several other biotech companies, Moderna is also years away from a marketable product.
So what say we? Well, the WealthLAB verdict says, sure there’s upside. But investors need to have a larger risk appetite to enter this stock.
3 Ways To Invest From Your Smartphone For Under $5
The numbers say 80% of millennials don’t invest in stocks.
Reason? Half say they don’t have money, one-third says it’s too early and another third says they don’t know how.
In addition to that, there’s demographic gap. “The average age of a financial advisor is 55,” said Douglas Boneparth, a New York City-based financial planner. “There are more financial advisors over the age of 70 than there are under 30.”
Despite these beliefs, you don’t really need much money, nor experience, to get started. (Just look at our fearless co-founder Odunayo Eweniyi and what she’s pulled off here)
Be that as it may, here are three ways to get started for $5 or less.
What: A micro-investment app (iOS and Android) with over 30 ETFs according to industry, sector and risk tolerance.
How it works: Download the app and choose your investment.
Minimum investment: $5
Cost: Fees range from $1 a month for accounts under $5,000 to 0.25% a year.
“We help people who don’t have a lot save money on a weekly basis,” CEO and co-founder Brandon Krieg said in one interview. “Stashers look like America, they look like people you meet every day: they are nurses and teachers and Uber and Lyft drivers.”
What: iOS and Android app.
How it works: Download the app and choose one of six index funds. When you buy, say a cup of coffee for $1.75, it rounds up the change to $2 and deposits the difference.
Minimum investment: $5
Cost: Just like Stash, fees range from $1 a month for accounts under $5,000 to 0.25% a year.
“We’re not trying to preach austerity to the client, because that’s a bummer,” CMO Manning Field says. “Some people will say, ‘Don’t have the cup of coffee.’ We’ll tell you to have the cup of coffee and invest along the way.”
What: A commission-free investment app (iOS and Android).
How it works: Download and start buying stocks.
Minimum investment: Whatever stock you want to buy.
And by the way, if you want to get a fast start on real estate, here’s Forbes’ list of nine REITs with yields between 8% and 10%.
CHART: How Blockchain Powers Bitcoin
Blockchain, Bitcoin. Bitcoin, blockchain.
The two terms go hand in hand—and have become almost ubiquitous with this year’s insane rise (and fall) of Bitcoin.
But what does it all really mean? How does it come together? In this week’s chart, our friends at CB Insights break down exactly how blockchain powers Bitcoin.
VIDEO: Shark Tank’s Mr. Wonderful Demonstrates Compound Interest
How young should your children be when you start teaching them about money? How should I teach my children about money?
The key to children and money is explaining what it is to them early in life. Shark Tank’s Mr. Wonderful, Kevin O’Leary, answers all these questions with this tip on explaining compound interest to your kids.