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Why Chimerix, Inc. Shares Took Off

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of Chimerix (NASDAQ: CMRX  ) , a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company attempting to develop oral antiviral drugs, rose by as much as 11%, its second double-digit percentage gain over the past six trading sessions, after announcing the completion of its common stock offering.

So what: According to Chimerix's press release, which actually came after the closing bell last night, it offered 8,395,000 shares at $14.22 per share, including a 1,095,000 share option exercised by the underwriters of the deal. All told, the gross proceeds of the transaction equate to $119.4 million for Chimerix. The company plans to use the proceeds to fund its research and development pipeline as well as for general corporate purposes.

Now what: Scratching your head again as Chimerix rallies following a share offering? The big news here is that not only was there strong demand for existing shares, but the underwriters exercised their full overallotment option, giving Chimerix even more gross proceeds in its pocket. The share offering, while dilutive, does give the company a good amount of cash to work with and removes the need for additional capital for the foreseeable future. In addition, the fact that it was able to price its shares at its previous day's closing price (when announced) suggested that demand for shares was high. While I do expect this upside reaction in the share price to be short-lived, I would encourage investors, as I did a week ago today, to keep their eyes closely on brincidofovir, Chimerix's lead antiviral drug. As a possible treatment for cytomegalovirus, this investigational drug could put Chimerix on the map. Ultimately, the success or failure of brincidofovir is really what shareholders should be using to gauge the success of Chimerix.

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Sean Williams

A Fool since 2010, and a graduate from UC San Diego with a B.A. in Economics, Sean specializes in the healthcare sector and in investment planning topics. You'll usually find him writing about Obamacare, marijuana, developing drugs, diagnostics, and medical devices, Social Security, taxes, or any number of other macroeconomic issues.

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