New Zealand-headquartered biotech Aroa Biosurgery (ASX:ARX) is up nearly 90 per cent on its first day of listed life.

The company, which raised $45m at 75c per share is currently trading at $1.40 — a gain of around 87 per cent.

Aroa Biosurgery (ASX:ARX) share price chart


Aroa is in the biological scaffold field. Biological scaffolds are artificial surgical implants which help bodies regrow tissue or bones that have been damaged or lost due to disease or injury.

Another ASX player in the space, Osteopore (ASX:OSX), also had a stellar ASX debut when it lit up the boards in September 2019, and the company has held its ground since.

Aroa’s scaffolds are made from sheep fore-stomachs (which are a by-product of lamb processing).

Among the ailments Aroa’s products target, utilising its Endoform platform, are diabetic ulcers, hernias and wounds.

It claims its scaffolds are substantially cheaper but stronger than competing products.


Another Kiwi IPO

With a market capitalisation of $225m Aroa is the biggest ASX IPO of 2020.

Additionally, the company is the 57th ASX stock to be headquartered or domiciled in New Zealand. It is the biggest Kiwi entrant since 2017.

The company’s main focus is the US, a market exceeding $US1.5bn ($2.1bn).

Yet that only includes products that have been commercialised. Aroa claims another $1bn will be addressed as it commercialises new products.

NASDAQ listed TELA Bio (NDQ:TLA) distributes Aroa’s products across American hospitals.

The company made revenues of $NZ22m ($20.5m) and a gross profit of $NZ18.7m ($17.5m) in the 12 months to April 1 2020.


A ‘key milestone’

CEO Brian Ward, who founded Aroa in 2008, said Aroa had reached a “key milestone” with its ASX debut.

“Since founding Aroa in 2008 we’ve developed the Endoform platform technology to deliver clinically effective products and a strong pipeline which places the business in an ideal position for continued growth across the US and other global markets,” Ward said.

“With our committed board, management and staff, we look forward to continuing to grow the value of Aroa, deliver better healing outcomes to patients and generate positive returns for our shareholders.”