FREMONT, Calif., Jan. 12 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- WaferGen Biosystems, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: WGBS), a leading developer of state-of-the-art genetic analysis systems, today highlighted progress with its SmartChip™ Real-Time PCR System and announced that it raised total gross proceeds of approximately $5.1 million in a private placement that the company completed in late December 2009. These announcements were made today as part of a presentation on WaferGen by Alnoor Shivji, chairman, president and chief executive officer, at the OneMedPlace Finance Forum in San Francisco, Calif.
Shivji told investors that the company has made progress toward positioning its SmartChip Real-Time PCR System as the platform of choice for biomarker discovery and validation through delivering significant speed and cost advantages to researchers. "Indications of our progress include: the financing announced today; the introduction of our new service for gene-expression profiling using the SmartChip System to provide early access to our products and a short-term revenue stream prior to commercialization; and clear support from leading industry and academic researchers," said Shivji.
$5.1 Million Private Placement
The company raised total gross proceeds of approximately $5.1 million in a private placement that the company completed in late December 2009. "WaferGen is committed to the advancement and commercialization of our SmartChip Real-Time PCR System to build value for both our investors and partners," said Shivji. "The proceeds from these financings will help strengthen our collaborations, accelerate ongoing product development, and speed our commercialization of the SmartChip Real-Time PCR System."
The company sold approximately 3.4 million units in the private placement at a price of $1.50 per unit, with each unit consisting of one share of the company's common stock and a warrant to purchase 25% of one share of common stock at an exercise price of $2.50 per whole share. The warrants have a term of five years and are subject to weighted average anti-dilution protection in the event the company subsequently issues its shares of common stock, or securities convertible into shares of common stock, for a price of less than $2.50 per share. The warrants are immediately exercisable.
Gilford Securities Incorporated acted as lead placement agent for the offering, with Spencer Trask also acting as a placement agent for the offering.
Proceeds from the financing are being used for general corporate purposes including the continued advancement and commercialization of the company's SmartChip™ Real-Time PCR System.
New Service for Gene-Expression Profiling Using SmartChip System
The company recently announced its new service for gene-expression profiling using its SmartChip System that will introduce researchers to the throughput benefits of SmartChip to maximize the discovery of new biomarkers. Shivji explained that for the first time, researchers can interrogate thousands of genes in a single run using Real-Time PCR and detect gene expression differences that could be missed using microarray technology. The initial product to be run on the SmartChip platform is the SmartChip Human Oncology Gene Panel that provides pathway based gene expression profiling for Oncology. It may also be used for Immunology, Metabolic and Stem Cell research. In addition, the company announced that it is adding the Human MicroRNA Panel for this service. The Human MicroRNA Panel provides the most comprehensive human microRNA panel of 885 microRNAs on a single SmartChip.
Collaborations with Leading Research Institutions
WaferGen has established collaborations with leading research institutions who are using the SmartChip System, including the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, who is conducting novel gene expression research in the area of lung disease; the University of Texas Southwestern, who is using SmartChip to identify and validate gene expression biomarkers related to wound healing; and UT Southwestern and IR BioSciences Holdings, Inc., also focused on wound healing research. "These exciting research collaborations are important milestones for WaferGen as they serve as powerful validation for our SmartChip Real-Time PCR System and the value it offers to the research community," said Shivji.
WaferGen Biosystems, Inc. is a leader in the development, manufacture and sale of state-of-the-art systems for gene expression and genotyping for the life science and pharmaceutical industries. The company is actively developing its SmartChip product for the gene expression and genotyping markets. SmartChip is being developed as the first whole genome, high throughput gene expression real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) platform and promises to deliver significant speed and cost advantages to researchers in the gene expression and genotyping markets. For additional information, please see http://www.wafergen.com.
This press release contains certain "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, as amended. Such statements include statements regarding the company's progress towards the positioning of its SmartChip Real-Time PCR System as the platform of choice for biomarker discovery and validation, statements regarding the possible benefits of the SmartChip System to researchers, and other statements that are not historical facts, including statements which may be preceded by the words "intends," "may," "will," "plans," "expects," "anticipates," "projects," "predicts," "estimates," "aims," "believes," "hopes," "potential" or similar words. For such statements, the company claims the protection of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.
Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance, are based on certain assumptions and are subject to various known and unknown risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond the control of the company. Actual results may differ materially from the expectations contained in the forward-looking statements. Factors that may cause such differences include: (i) the risks that the company may be unsuccessful in commercially developing its products or in achieving market acceptance of new and relatively unproven technologies; (ii) the company will need to raise additional capital to meet its business requirements in the future and the company may not be able to do so on reasonable terms or at all; (iii) the company's proprietary intellectual property rights may not adequately protect its products and technologies; and (iv) the company expects intense competition in its target markets, including from companies that have much greater resources than the company, and there can be no assurance that the company will be able to compete effectively. More detailed information about the company and the risk factors that may affect the realization of forward-looking statements is set forth in the company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2008, and subsequent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q. Investors and security holders are urged to read this document free of charge on the SEC's web site at www.sec.gov. The company does not undertake to publicly update or revise its forward-looking statements as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
SOURCE WaferGen Biosystems, Inc.