The roughly $230 million raised by
was the second largest follow-on stock offering by a biotech company in 2009 -- a year in which money raised by the sector overall is down significantly.
That's a pretty good indication of strong demand from institutional investors for a piece of Dendreon and its prostate cancer vaccine Provenge.
(VRTX - Get Report)
was able to price a larger stock offering this year, raising $320 million in February. After that sits Dendreon, followed by
(SGEN - Get Report)
($49 million) and
(GERN - Get Report)
($46 million), according to Burrill & Co., a San Francisco-based life sciences merchant bank.
No one should be surprised that Dendreon chose to sell company stock to raise money. After last week's
Provenge data presentation
, CEO Mitch Gold was upfront about the company's
plans to raise money
in two ways -- both through a stock sale and by partnering Provenge's ex-U.S. commercial rights.
Gold was more circumspect about the timing of a stock sale, but generally speaking, biotech companies try to raise money when they can -- when the demand for the stock is high -- and not when the money is desperately needed.
In this case, Dendreon was able to sell 10.7 million shares with a 1.27 million-share over-allotment in an overnight deal handled by Deutsche Bank Securities. The company hasn't yet announced pricing, but the deal reportedly went off at $19.20 a share. That's at the high end of the range in which the stock was being offered Thursday night and a minuscule 3% discount to Dendreon's closing price of $19.76.