Goldman Small Cap Research recently initiated coverage of iBio (IBIO) with a Speculative Buy rating and a six-month price target of $6.00. It appears that the research firm’s forecast has news in the segment in February that could take it to the $10.00 leveli
Goldman believes that iBio is a paradigm-changing biotech that offers investors the typical biotech rewards with much lower investment risk. The iBio model enables product development and revenue generation without the typical capital costs and multi-year approval timeframe associated with traditional biotechs. iBio owns the intellectual property and technology related to its revolutionary platform, iBioLaunch. iBioLauch enables commercial scale production of proteins using genes injected into hydroponically grown plants used to produce the target proteins. This platform is suited for use in alternative influenza and bio-defense vaccines, orphan biologics, biosimilars and biobetters, each representing market sizes in the tens of billions.
Interestingly, the technology was developed by one of its partners, the Fraunhofer USA Center for Molecular Biotechnology (FCMB). FCMB is part of a huge international organization with over 17,000 scientists and engineers worldwide. The company’s partners and funders are Tier 1 and clearly validate the technology, and the iBio model. iBio is also partnered with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which, along with DARPA has provided $70M in development funding, including for a proof-of-platform concept Phase I clinical trial.
It looks like catalysts are around the corner and shareholder value should be realized throughout the year. The Company’s Phase I clinical trial of the technology has commenced and top-line results are expected in the coming months. Given the broad applications of the platform for use in the production of vaccines cheaper, faster, and with no animal cell production, iBio is positioned to quickly secure deals that will result in royalty streams later this year. Plus, the pending FDA approval decision for comparable Protalix (PLX) in February could drive investors toward iBio.
Goldman believes that a PRX approval could take the stock toward the $10.00 level.