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AbCellera: Why I Don't Love This Drug Discoverer's Business Model

Mar. 24, 2023 1:54 PM ETAbCellera Biologics Inc. (ABCL)33 Comments


  • AbCellera's monstrous 2020 IPO raised >$480m.
  • The company is pledging to discover promising antibodies for its clients and bring them to the clinic faster than anybody else.
  • For its work, AbCellera earns milestone payments if the molecules go on to be successful, plus a share of commercial revenues.
  • So far this model has worked once - with two Eli Lilly COVID antibodies that are no longer authorized. It's possible the company generates no meaningful revenues this year or next.
  • The company currently has six other partnered clinical assets - none look especially promising. I'm not convinced this business model works and attempt to explain why in this post.
  • We're currently running a sale for our private investing group, Haggerston BioHealth, where members get access to portfolios, market alerts, real-time chat, and more. Learn More »

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deberarr/iStock via Getty Images

AbCellera (NASDAQ:ABCL) listed on the Nasdaq in December 2020, completing a monstrous initial public offering of 24.15m shares at a price of $20 per share, for funds of ~$483m, which would be directed toward the discovery of antibody


AbCellera partnered program portfolio (AbCellera Presentation)


downstream participation (AbCellera 10-K )


AbCellera - molecules in clinic (AbCellera presentation)

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This article was written by

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Analyst’s Disclosure: I/we have a beneficial long position in the shares of ABBV either through stock ownership, options, or other derivatives. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

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