After all the brown-nosing* by the analyst and investment bank community, Alnylam just announced that it has commenced a public offering of 7,000,000 shares. This should net the company around $85,000,000- probably enough for a low-ball offer for Tekmira.
Yes, Alnylam is burning through its cash at a rate of $80M a year, and yes, it is an old adage in biotechnology that you raise capital when the going (= share price) is good. With $260M in the coffers though, the timing would seem overly conservative and given my read on the situation, it is in Alnylam’s best interest to make Tekmira an offer. Valentine’s Day would be good timing for that indeed.
* I’ll wash my finger-tips, but I had to get this off my chest. There are analysts that have been there through good and bad times. Others have understandably been attracted by the positive clinical trial results- OK. But the recent analyst upgrades and Q+A sessions in conference calls were just unbearable with nothing but softballs and the avoidance of tough questions.