Genprex, a startup developing anti-cancer therapies, is Austin’s newest publicly traded company.
The biotech company’s shares debuted Thursday at an initial public offering price of $5.
Genprex offered 1.28 million common shares in the IPO, as well as another 192,000 available through an underwriters over-allotment.
The company is expected to make about $6.4 million to further its development efforts.
Genprex is developing molecular therapies to better target cancer cells. Its flagship drug, called Oncoprex, is an injectable treatment for non-small lung cancer. It is currently in phase II clinical trials.
The company said in previous securities filings that it will use the new capital to complete its current trials and begin another clinical study, invest in pre-clinical research, and file paperwork with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Genprex ended up raising less than originally planned. In October 2017, when the company set its share price, it intended to issue between 2.5 million and 4.5 million shares of common stock, which would have brought in between $12.5 million and $22.5 million.
According to securities filings, Genprex has not yet generated revenue. In 2016, it spent $4.1 million on general and administrative costs, including salaries and research and development.
Genprex was founded in 2009 as Convergen LifeSciences Inc. In 2011, the company received a $4.5 million state technology grant that stirred controversy because of the then-CEO David Nance’s campaign donations totaling $100,000 to Gov. Rick Perry.
Nance launched Convergen in 2009, a few months after resigning as CEO of Introgen Therapeutics, which went backrupt after a failed, years-long effort to bring another cancer drug to market.
Nance left Convergen and died in 2016 at age 64 after a battle with cancer, according to an obituary published in the San Antonio Express-News.
Genprex’s shares trade on the Nasdaq small cap market under the ticker GNPX.
Shares of Genprex were at $4.07, up 23 cents, or 6.12 percent in late-afternoon trading.