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Life sciences take Fieldfisher to top of AIM deal league table

03/08/2020
Acuris' ECMi report ranks Fieldfisher's equity capital markets practice first for AIM deals by volume and third for overall ECM deal activity on all markets, boosted by a surge of fundraisings for listed healthcare and life sciences businesses during the Covid-19 pandemic.
 

European law firm Fieldfisher has maintained its status as a leading legal adviser to UK-listed companies, preserving its ranking as the top law firm by AIM deal volume in H1 2020 according to the latest ECMi market data from Acuris.
 
Fieldfisher was also ranked third by overall ECM deal activity in H1, encompassing transactions on both AIM and the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange.
 
Fieldfisher's Band 1 ranked ECM team has been particularly busy during the pandemic, especially in the healthcare and life sciences sector, having acted on numerous fundraisings during the lockdown period, either bank side or issuer side, involving Synairgen, Phynova, Avacta, Diaceutics, OptiBiotix Health, Inspiration Healthcare, Diurnal Group, Polarean Imaging, Cambridge Cognition and Omega Diagnostics.
 
In its report, Acuris noted that the UK's Covid-19 lockdown measures, which came into force on 23 March 2020, "had a dramatic impact on share prices, and the structure and frequency of UK ECM transactions during H1 2020".
 
While deal volume was negatively impacted, in terms of value, both AIM and the Main Market recorded significant increases from H1 2019. AIM total deal value grew by £899 million, a 38.66% increase, while the Main Market raised £5,780 million more, a rise of 40.3% over H1 2019.
 
Commenting on the H1 2020 rankings of Fieldfisher's equity capital markets team, Janita Good, corporate partner and Head of Life Sciences at Fieldfisher, said:
 
"The firm continued its strong performance despite the impact of the Covid-19 lockdown thanks largely to its strength in healthcare and life sciences, as many businesses in this sector saw the pandemic as an opportunity to accelerate strategic fundraisings and transactions.
 
"We were pleased to assist on some headline grabbing deals for the likes of Synairgen, which has been heavily involved in efforts to develop Covid-19 treatments, and are tentatively looking forward to a strong pipeline of life sciences deals for the remainder of 2020."
 
Fieldfisher's ECM healthcare and life sciences transaction highlights in H1 2020:
 
  • Acting for Panmure Gordon and Cantor Fitzgerald as joint brokers to AIM-listed Diurnal Group plc, a specialist pharmaceutical company, on a placing to raise £11.2 million (March);
  • Acting for Phynova on its €10 million funding round by DSM Venturing, part of Royal DSM.
  • Acting for AIM-quoted Synairgen plc, a leading drug discovery and development company, on a £14 million fundraising to begin an expedited trial of its anti-viral drug in Covid-19 patients (March);
  • Acting for finnCap on a subscription and placing to raise £5.75 million for AIM-quoted cancer treatment and Covid test developer, Avacta Group plc (April);
  • Acting for finnCap in its capacity as sole broker on AIM-quoted OptioBiotix Health plc's secondary fundraising (April);
  • Acting for nominated adviser and broker SP Angel on the £8.4 million secondary fundraising of Polarean Imaging plc (April);
  • Acting for finnCap and Zeus Capital as brokers to Avacta Group plc on a heavily oversubscribed £48 million fundraising to develop Covid-19 testing and expand its pipeline of differentiated cancer therapies (June);
  • Acting for Cenkos Securities as nominated adviser and sole broker to AIM-quoted Diaceutics plc's secondary fundraising, raising £20.5 million to pursue new growth opportunities;
  • Acting for finnCap in its capacity as nominated adviser, broker and bookrunner for AIM-quoted Omega Diagnostics Group on a transaction to raise up to £11 million via a placing and share offer (June).
 
 

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Equity Capital Markets

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Life Sciences