IBIO stock is a speculative bet that has the potential to double from current levels if there is positive progress related to clinical trials. GoodRx is a rare breed of modern tech IPO: a startup that is actually profitable and heading to the public markets. The consumer service offers coupons on prescriptions redeemable at pharmacies that can save customers significant money on their monthly drug prices. The company filed an amended S-1 with the SEC this morning, and that […] DraftKings will now be the exclusive provider of daily fantasy sports for ESPN. Amazon.com on Monday said it is recruiting 100,000 more workers — the fourth hiring spree it has announced for the United States this year — to keep pace with e-commerce demand that jumped during the pandemic. Canada’s premium retail cannabis brand raises additional funds to support further Spiritleaf store expansion in key customer markets CALGARY, AB, Sept. 14, 2020 /CNW/ – Inner Spirit Holdings Ltd.
The Robinhood website lists iBio (NYSEMKTS:IBIO) among the 100 most popular stocks traded on the commission-free trading platform. Looking at IBIO stock price action, it’s not difficult to guess why millennials like the stock.
Prior to the novel coronavirus pandemic, the stock was trading at 33 cents. With the company joining the list of potential vaccine developers, the stock surged to a high of $7.45 by July 2020. Amid volatility, the stock has trended lower and currently trades around $2.
I believe that is plenty of action left in the stock and a strong bounce-back is likely after the deep correction. This column will discuss the factors that can trigger upside for IBIO stock.
As I write, its being reported that AstraZeneca (NYSE:AZN) has put its Covid-19 trial on hold over safety concerns. Reports suggest that the potential vaccine had a “suspected serious adverse reaction in a study participant.”
The bad news is that the world needs to keep waiting for a vaccine. For other vaccine candidates, the good news is that they can race a-step-ahead if trials run smoothly. Not surprising that AZN stock is sharply lower in post-market trade.
Before discussing the company’s vaccine development progress, its worth noting that iBio recently inked an agreement with Planet Biotech. The agreement involves global rights to the latter’s COVID-19 therapeutic candidate, ACE2-Fc. On announcement of this partnership in late August, IBIO stock traded higher by 24%. This is just an example of how a few positive catalysts can send the stock soaring.
In August 2020, the company also provided an update on the vaccine program. The initial results from the pre-clinical trials have been encouraging. Further positive developments for IBIO-200 and IBIO-201 will serve as a strong catalyst for the stock.
The obvious investment risk is that iBio still does not have any vaccine or drug in the market. That makes the stock speculative. A counter view is that the company has partnered with the likes of Infectious Disease Research Institute and Texas A&M University for vaccine program development. This lends more credibility to the company’s efforts toward developing a vaccine.
Of course, there are other relatively smaller players in the fray. According to McKinsey & Company, “More than 50 candidates are expected to enter human trials in 2020, and 250 total vaccine candidates are being pursued.”
The report further states that “historical attrition rates would suggest that such a pipeline could yield more than seven approved products over the next few years.”
For now, the stocks will react to news related to different phases of the clinical trial. From that perspective, there is a flurry of news that’s due from iBio in the next few quarters.
Last month, the U.S. government signed a $1.5 billion deal with Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) to supply of 100 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine. Any such deal for iBio can send the stock soaring.
Besides the race for the Covid-19 vaccine, iBio has a strong pipeline of vaccines and drugs in an early development stage. Some of the financing sponsors for the development program include National Institute of Mental Health, GE Healthcare and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Backing of credible sponsors underscores the point that the company’s pipeline has potential. Any conversion to approved vaccine can take the stock higher.
In addition, the demonstration of scalability to produce 500 million doses of vaccine on an annual basis should help iBio secure a government contract if the vaccine development progresses well.
For now, positive news on further phases of clinical trials for Covid-19 vaccine can help the stock double from current levels. However, I still believe that the stock is a purely speculative bet and a big exposure should be avoided.
On the date of publication, Faisal Humayun did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in any of the securities mentioned in this article.
Faisal Humayun is a senior research analyst with 12 years of industry experience in the field of credit research, equity research and financial modelling. Faisal has authored over 1,500 stock specific articles with focus on the technology, energy and commodities sector. As of this writing, Faisal Humayun did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.
GoodRx offers founders $500M, nets $100M investment from Silver Lake, and makes quiet acquisition before IPO – TechCrunch
GoodRx is a rare breed of modern tech IPO: a startup that is actually profitable and heading to the public markets. The consumer service offers coupons on prescriptions redeemable at pharmacies that can save customers significant money on their monthly drug prices.
The company filed an amended S-1 with the SEC this morning, and that included three pieces of news that hadn’t previously been reported.
First and most significantly, the company notes in its filing that it is offering its two co-founders, Douglas Hirsch and Trevor Bezdek, approximately 25 million shares of stock, at what the company placed as a fair-market value of $533.3 million. That stock has both a time-based component and a performance-based component, and is designed to incentivize the duo to commit to the company for the long term.
Unlike most startups exiting these days, the two founders hold very little ownership of their company, with both Hirsch and Bezdek owning just a 1.3% stake in GoodRx prior to the IPO. The equity award — if fully realized — would roughly quadruple their individual stakes in the company.
This so-called “Founders Award” wasn’t included in the company’s initial prospectus. While companies typically offer stock grants, and sometimes bountiful stock grants, to key managers and employees, the scale of the offer here is quite high compared to the norm. That might reflect feedback from equity investors who were concerned that the founders had such diminutive stake in their own company compared to other recent technology IPO issues.
In addition to the equity award, the second bit of news is that growth equity investor Silver Lake is going to buy a $100 million stake in GoodRx through a private placement that will be set to the IPO price. Silver Lake currently owns 35.3% of GoodRx through its previous private equity investment into the company in 2018. The additional $100 million in capital will help the fund build up its position as GoodRx enters the public markets. The agreement was signed yesterday, according to the company’s filing.
These “beat-the-IPO-buzzer” private placements have been a common pattern in recent weeks. Similar to Silver Lake here, Salesforce Ventures and Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway each invested $250 million into cloud data platform Snowflake in a private placement. For Berkshire, that was a first foray into an unprofitable technology company.
Third and finally, the company has noted that it quietly bought Scriptcycle, a prescription management service for retail chains, for $60.1 million back on August 31. The Asheville, North Carolina-based startup has just a handful of employees, according to LinkedIn. As part of the terms of the acquisition, employees and managers are expected to receive $3 million of new stock in GoodRx, vesting over two years.
Altogether then, GoodRx’s filing indicated that it is targeting a share price of $28 for a maximum offering size of about $1.1 billion.
Author: Danny Crichton
DraftKings Stock Jumps Over 16% After Announcing ESPN Deal
Breaking||Sep 14, 2020,03:11pm EDT
Updated Sep 14, 2020, 03:12pm EDT
Shares of daily fantasy and sports-betting company DraftKings surged by over 16% on Monday after the company announced a new partnership with sports entertainment giant ESPN.
DraftKings co-founder and CEO Jason Robins.
DraftKings is set to become the exclusive provider of daily fantasy sports and co-exclusive partner for gambling link-outs from ESPN, the company announced on Monday.
While financial details of the deal were not disclosed, DraftKings will now be able to integrate its products and offerings across ESPN’s digital platforms and studio shows, according to the announcement.
DraftKings’ stock jumped more than 16% on the news Monday, adding to its momentous run despite major U.S. sporting events being postponed for months during the height of the coronavirus pandemic shutdowns.
Shares of DraftKings have now risen more than 160% since going public through a reverse merger with special-purpose acquisition company Diamond Eagle back in April.
Despite going public at a time when there were few live sports to bet on, DraftKings saw a surge of demand from online gamblers betting on everything from video games and a charity golf match to table tennis and Korean baseball.
The stock’s last big move came earlier this month, rallying 8% after DraftKings announced that sports legend and NBA Hall of Famer Michael Jordan—who Forbes estimates has a net worth of $1.6 billion—would join its board of directors.
Wall Street analysts are quite bullish on the stock, which currently trades for just over $47 per share. Eleven analysts (65%) give it a “buy” rating, while just six give it a “hold” rating, according to Bloomberg data.
“ESPN helped revolutionize the 24/7 sports news cycle and continues to be the go-to source for many fans today on the latest and largest sports stories,” said DraftKings CEO Jason Robins in a press release. “We look forward to this collaboration to exclusively showcase DraftKings’ daily fantasy sports content and offerings while also advancing further visibility and mainstream adoption of our regulated sports betting products.”
ESPN, which is owned by parent-company Walt Disney, has broadcasting rights to most major U.S. sports including the NBA and NFL’s Monday Night Football. U.S. sportsbooks saw high demand for betting last weekend, thanks to the return of the NFL as well as playoff games for the NBA and NHL.
DraftKings Shares Skyrocket Thanks To Bets On Table Tennis, Korean Baseball (Forbes)
NBA Great Michael Jordan Tapped As ‘Advisor,’ Part Owner Of Sports Betting’s DraftKings (Forbes)
What Are People Betting On With Most Sports On Hiatus? Try Russian Table Tennis, Korean Baseball And More (Forbes)
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Author: Sergei Klebnikov
Amazon to hire 100,000 more workers in its latest job spree this year
Amazon vans line up at a distribution center to pick up packages for delivery on Amazon Prime Day, July 16, 2019, in Orlando, Florida.
Paul Hennessy | NurPhoto | Getty Images
Amazon.com on Monday said it is recruiting 100,000 more workers — the fourth hiring spree it has announced for the United States this year — to keep pace with e-commerce demand that jumped during the pandemic.
The world’s biggest online retailer said the positions are for full and part-time work in its home country and Canada, and these will include roles at 100 new warehouse and operations sites it is opening this month. The Seattle-based company employed 876,800 people as of June 30, excluding contractors and temporary personnel.
The news reflects Amazon’s constant need for labor to pick, pack and ship products to shoppers’ doorsteps, with a 40% revenue rise last quarter and the biggest profit in the retailer’s 26-year-history. It is rolling out automation at its newest buildings at the same time, said Alicia Boler Davis, Amazon’s vice president of global customer fulfillment.
“We will continue to deploy technology where appropriate, starting from a safety perspective” and “where we can improve our overall operation,” Boler Davis said in an interview.
She did not have a comment on whether automation means fewer jobs per warehouse but said Amazon uses its systems for collaboration with people. “We don’t look at it as an ‘either/or.'”
Boler Davis, recently appointed to Amazon’s senior leadership team, said the company is still evaluating seasonal employment needs for the winter holiday, apart from the 100,000 positions it is filling.
Earlier this month Amazon announced 33,000 openings for corporate and technology workers. It announced 100,000 and 75,000 new operations jobs in March and April, respectively, in an appeal to people who were laid off by other businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Inner Spirit Holdings Announces Additional Strategic Investment to Fund Spiritleaf Corporate Store Expansion across Canada
Canada’s premium retail cannabis brand raises additional funds to support further Spiritleaf store expansion in key customer markets
CALGARY, AB, Sept. 14, 2020 /CNW/ – Inner Spirit Holdings Ltd. (“Inner Spirit” or the “Company”) (CSE: ISH), a Canadian company that has established a national network of Spiritleaf retail cannabis stores, today announced a third meaningful investment by an existing institutional shareholder.
Inner Spirit Holdings logo (CNW Group/Inner Spirit Holdings Ltd.)
The Company has closed a private placement offering (the “Offering”) for aggregate gross proceeds of $720,000, issuing 6,000,000 common shares of the Company (the “Common Shares”) at $0.12 per share to a UK-based independent private equity firm. The Common Shares are subject to a four-month hold period in accordance with applicable securities laws. This is the third private placement financing completed with the UK-based firm, which now holds 9.7% of the issued and outstanding Common Shares, bringing the firm’s total investment in the Company to $2.4 million.
“We appreciate the continued support from a strong and committed institutional partner and we’re pleased with our financial position as we have more than $4.5 million in cash on hand to fuel an expansion that includes adding corporate stores in key markets. The 58 Spiritleaf stores operating across Canada include a select group of corporate stores along with a strong base of franchised locations operated by entrepreneurs serving their local communities,” said Darren Bondar, President and CEO of Inner Spirit.
“Spiritleaf stores across the country have been recording strong operating performance as the network matures. Proceeds from today’s financing will enable us to selectively add new corporate-owned stores in targeted markets within Canada,” said Bondar. At the start of this month, the Ontario market had approximately 140 cannabis retail stores serving a population of 14.7 million residents, which points to a major market opportunity for cannabis retailers.
The Company also just completed its virtual Spirit Bus Tour across Canada over the summer which generated sales growth as well as increased average basket size purchasing by customers. The tour made stops at every Spiritleaf store where Spiritleaf Collective customer benefits program members were able to access exclusive promotions and special edition festival swag. The tour helped the fast-growing Collective program increase to more than 110,000 members.
The Spiritleaf retail cannabis store network currently includes a total of 58 stores (47 franchised and 11 corporate-owned) operating in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Ontario, and Newfoundland and Labrador. Please visit www.spiritleaf.ca for information on store locations and operating hours.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Spiritleaf stores are operating with enhanced customer service processes to ensure the safety of employees and customers. Spiritleaf’s Select & Collect service enables customers to pre-shop and order online prior to pick-up in store. Customers can also connect with their local Spiritleaf store through the Collective program to further streamline and individualize the shopping experience.
About Inner Spirit
Inner Spirit Holdings Ltd. (CSE:ISH) is a franchisor and operator of Spiritleaf recreational cannabis stores across Canada. The Spiritleaf network includes franchised and corporate locations, all operated with an entrepreneurial spirit and with the goal of creating deep and lasting ties within local communities. Spiritleaf aims to be the most knowledgeable and trusted source of recreational cannabis by offering a premium consumer experience and quality curated cannabis products. The Company is led by passionate advocates for cannabis who have years of retail, franchise and consumer marketing experience. Spiritleaf holds a Franchisees’ Choice Designation from the Canadian Franchise Association for its award-winning national support centre. The Company’s key industry partners and investors include Auxly Cannabis Group Inc. (TSX.V:XLY), HEXO Corp (TSX:HEXO), Tilray, Inc. (NASDAQ:TLRY) and Prairie Merchant Corporation. Learn more at www.innerspiritholdings.com and www.spiritleaf.ca.
This news release contains statements and information that, to the extent that they are not historical fact, may constitute “forward-looking information” within the meaning of applicable securities legislation. Forward-looking information is typically, but not always, identified by the use of words such as “will” and similar words, including negatives thereof, or other similar expressions concerning matters that are not historical facts. Forward-looking information in this news release includes, but is not limited to, statements regarding: the proceeds from the Offering enabling the Company to selectively add new corporate-owned stores in targeted markets within Canada. Such forward-looking information is based on various assumptions and factors that may prove to be incorrect, including, but not limited to, factors and assumptions with respect to: the ability of the Company to successfully implement its strategic plans and initiatives and whether such strategic plans and initiatives will yield the expected benefits; and the receipt by the Company of necessary licences from regulatory authorities. Although the Company believes that the assumptions and factors on which such forward-looking information is based are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on the forward-looking information because the Company can give no assurance that it will prove to be correct or that any of the events anticipated by such forward-looking information will transpire or occur, or if any of them do so, what benefits the Company will derive therefrom. Actual results could differ materially from those currently anticipated due to a number of factors and risks including, but not limited to: the risk that the Company does not receive the necessary retail cannabis licences or that it is not able to open additional retail cannabis stores as anticipated or at all; the ability of management to execute its business strategy, objectives and plans; and the impact of general economic conditions and the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada. The forward-looking information included in this news release is made as of the date of this news release and the Company does not undertake an obligation to publicly update such forward-looking information to reflect new information, subsequent events or otherwise, unless required by applicable securities legislation.
SOURCE Inner Spirit Holdings Ltd.
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