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VaxGen/diaDexus merger

This article was originally published in The Gray Sheet

Executive Summary

Diagnostics firm diaDexus will merge with vaccine developer VaxGen in a stock-swap deal worth about $21.7 million, the firms announce April 14. Publicly held VaxGen will trade 51.6 million of its shares (which closed at $0.42 each just prior to the deal's announcement) for all shares of privately held diaDexus. However, the merged entity will be 61% owned by current diaDexus shareholders and 39% owned by VaxGen stockholders. The combined company also will be named diaDexus and will be run by current diaDexus officers. The diaDexus PLAC test is the only FDA-cleared blood test for assessing risk for coronary heart disease and ischemic stroke. "The proposed merger provides an efficient path for providing capital to fund the growth of our commercial organization, to continue activities needed for broader reimbursement of our PLAC test, and to provide for potential expansion of our product portfolio," diaDexus CEO Patrick Plewman said. VaxGen had about $32 million in cash as of Dec. 31, the company notes. Both firms are based in South San Francisco. VaxGen's stockholders failed to approve a previously planned merger deal with drug maker Oxigene in February
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