Shares in Brisbane-based biotech AnteoTech (ASX: ADO) have spiked on the news that the company received applications totalling $37.1 million for its share purchase plan (SPP), encouraging the board to double the raise.
The massive vote of confidence from securityholders means the company will raise $8 million via the SPP, enabling the company to establish a local manufacturing facility.
"We are extremely grateful for the support shown by our existing shareholders; this is a strong vote of confidence in our team and broader strategy," AnteoTech CEO Derek Thomson said.
"AnteoTech has a solid pipeline of tests in development and these funds greatly assist in accelerating the process of validating and registering the tests for introduction to the markets over the coming 18 months."
From the SPP funds, $4 million will be used for its original purpose: accelerating the company's lithium ion battery development program.
The remaining $4 million will be applied to the execution of the company's life sciences manufacturing strategy, including the procurement and installation of a test strip production line.
"The planned use of the SPP funds for the Energy division will provide a platform to establish AnteoX in the Li-Ion battery market, while those allocated to the Life Sciences division will enable us to bring forward the procurement and establishment of a local manufacturing capability for our COVID-19 Antigen Rapid Test and other tests in development," Thomson said.
"Having the ability to manufacture at scale in-house will provide a great advantage to AnteoTech in speed to market and de-risk manufacturing and the supply chain."
Approximately 30.7 million new shares will be issued under the SPP.
The news follows AnteoTech's breakthrough into the European market after regulators approved the trademark for its low-cost, high-sensitivity COVID-19 test in the market.
The company's 'AnteoBind' technology - originally developed to test for the life-threatening infection Sepsis - already forms part of its customer Ellume's at-home COVID-19 diagnostics platform that is sold to the US, but now the group plans to sell its own product directly in the EU and UK.
Unlike Ellume's tests which can be sold over the counter in the US at pharmacies such as CVS, EuGeni is currently only marketed as intended for healhcare professionals.
AnteoTech also plans to make the product available by mid-year in Australia, where strict rules are in place that prevent at-home testing for notifiable diseases such as COVID-19.
The launch of the product in Europe was supported by a $12 million raise where AnteoTech issued new shares at $0.26 per share.
Shares in AnteoTech are up 9.52 per cent to $0.34 per share at 3.37pm AEST.
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