The IPO Buzz: A Mid-May Trio

This week’s IPO calendar looks much like last week’s. That one was mostly wing flapping and no flying. Nevertheless, it produced nine deals. This week, the world is looking at three offerings. One issue is already traded on the Euronext Brussels, the other is out of China, and the remaining one comes from the U.S. biopharmaceutical industry.

The names are argenx SE (ARGX – proposed), Bright Scholar Education Holdings (BEDU – proposed) and G1 Therapeutics (GTHX – proposed). Overall, the three deals are expected to raise about $274 million.

Cancer Drugs and China Scholars

argenx, based in the Netherlands, is a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing a pipeline of antibody-based therapies to treat severe autoimmune diseases and cancer.

Note: The company’s shares have been traded on the Euronext Brussels since 2014. As such, any investor can buy its ordinary shares before the American Depositary Shares are priced. That makes the deal a secondary offering.

Bankers plan to offer 3.6 million American Depositary Shares on Wednesday evening, May 17, 2017, to trade on Thursday, May 18, on the NASDAQ Global Market. The shares closed at about US$17.21 on the Euronext on Friday, May 12.

Bright Scholar Education Holdings, based in Guangdong, China, is the largest operator of international and bilingual K-12 schools in China. Bright Scholar offers international education to Chinese students with the goal of “equipping them with the critical academic foundation and skillsets necessary to succeed in the pursuit of higher education overseas,” the company says.

Bankers plan to offer 15 million shares at $8 to $10 each on Wednesday evening, May 17, to trade on Thursday, May 18, on the New York Stock Exchange.

G1 Therapeutics, based in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing novel small-molecule therapies that address significant unmet needs in the treatment of cancer. The company has what it considers a pipeline of potential best-in-class and first-in-class drug candidates in multiple oncology indications.

Bankers plan to offer 6.25 million shares at $15 to $17 each on Tuesday evening, May 16, to trade Wednesday, May 17, on the NASDAQ Global Market.

(For more information, please check the IPO profiles found on’s website.)

Brisk Pace, Mild Gains

The IPO market’s pace was as brisk last week as a practice run for the Preakness. Bankers priced nine IPOs that raised $1.7 billion last week. Another nine companies filed amendments updating their proposed offerings, five more companies filed for IPOs, and one deal from last week’s calendar was postponed.

Here is the breakdown on the IPOs that made their debuts:

(For more information, please check the IPO profiles found on’s website.)

Four of the six IPOs (this group excludes the blank checks) closed their opening day with gains – and the average gain for all six was just 3.91 percent. That was sharply below 2017’s average opening-day gain of 8.17 percent for all 53 IPOs priced this year.

Consequently, last week could be written off as wing flapping, but no flying.

Another Break in May

This brings us to the week of May 22, when the calendar has just three offerings scheduled. But that could change on Monday morning when the SEC’s filing window re-opens for business.

Stay tuned.

Disclosure: Neither the author nor anyone else on the staff has a position in any stocks mentioned, nor do we trade or invest in IPOs. The author and staff do not issue advice, recommendations or opinion.