South Korean bio startup GenBody, which originally was planning an initial public offering this year, has changed its schedule, according to industry sources on April 18.
According to sources, the firm’s decision was mainly due to a decrease in its corporate value.
Established in 2012, GenBody is the first South Korea company that developed the Zika virus test kit. As the virus spread in South America, industry watchers saw high potential for its growth.
Industry insiders last year projected GenBody’s value to be around 1 trillion won ($879.5 million), but this changed recently as its business in Brazil -- its main market -- suffered as a state-owned enterprises postponed a partnership deal after President Jair Bolsonaro won the election in end-2018.
Moreover, although the specific figure of the last year’s profit has not been disclosed, it is expected to have decreased as it is investing in developing new businesses.
The company’s sales in 2017 reached 62.5 billion won while posting 30.6 billion won operating profit. Back in 2017, this high profit, which is unusual for a bio startup, was also one of its merits that attracted many investors.
The company first started preparing for an IPO in 2017 and picked Mirae Asset Daewoo and Korea Investment and Securities as its deal managers. But GenBody failed to be listed on secondary Kosdaq in April 2017, as it did not provide sufficient information about its inventories.
By Song Seung-hyun (email@example.com)