Shares in Cellectar Tumble After It Announces $3.3M Stock Offering

Xconomy Wisconsin — 

Cellectar Biosciences (NASDAQ: CLRB) expects to raise $3.3 million in a common stock offering, the Madison, WI-based biotech company said in a press release Monday.

Shares in cash-strapped Cellectar, which CEO Jim Caruso said in an earnings call last month is open to collaborating with other companies across most of its drug pipeline, were lower on the news. The company’s stock price was $2.15 as of this writing, down 24 percent from $2.83 when markets closed Friday.

The announcement does not come as a major surprise. During last month’s earnings call, CFO Chad Kolean said Cellectar ended the second quarter with $4.8 million in cash and cash equivalents, enough to carry the company through to the end of 2015.

The company said it would use the latest financing to continue supporting the Phase 1 clinical trial for a drug designed to treat multiple myeloma, an incurable form of cancer.

Caruso, who was appointed in June, said last month that the company started the trial in April and expects to evaluate its first cohort of patients during the first half of 2016.

Money raised in the common stock offering would also further the development of targeted imaging and therapeutic cancer agents delivered by special compounds called phospholipid ethers. Caruso has called the company’s proprietary delivery system the “cornerstone” of its development strategy.

The offering is one of the company’s first major initiatives under Caruso, a veteran of the biotech industry who had not served as a CEO prior to joining Cellectar.

After the company announced Caruso’s hire, its stock price rose above $3 for the first time in weeks. Shares held fairly steady until Sept. 16, closing at $3.10 that day. Cellectar’s stock is down over 30 percent since.