Baby Breaker Birth Announcements

Welcome back to Baby Breakerdom! This week's quest to find budding Rule Breakers reveals another biotech upstart pulling away from the stock market and a Baby Breaker that wants you to shop till you drop.

We start with Intarcia Therapeutics, which a week ago cited unfavorable market conditions in pulling its planned IPO, which could have raised more than $86 million. That's just spooky. Earlier in the year, EpiCept did the same thing and then three weeks ago spent $136 million worth of stock to buy Maxim Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: MAXM  ) instead.

That Intarcia blinked may be bad news for investors hoping to cash in soon on Intarcia's breast cancer treatment, but it could prove smart in the long run. I mean, really, with competitors like Genentech (NYSE: DNA  ) and Rule Breaker Universe member Dendreon (Nasdaq: DNDN  ) , Intarcia can't afford to make a financing error. Besides, it's not as though Intarcia is desperate for moola right now. VentureWire reports that the company had more than $46 million in cash and equivalents as of June 30. That ought to be more than enough to fund operations through phase 3 trials, which are ongoing.

Moving on to the malls of cyberspace, comparison shopper Shop.com received $25 million in new venture funding from a group led by Oak Investment Partners. The hope, it appears, is to capture some of the love that's been bestowed on its rivals in recent months. For example, in June, eBay (Nasdaq: EBAY  ) paid $620 million for Shopping.com. Then, a week later, another "e" arrived on the scene. This time it was E.W. Scripps (NYSE: SSP  ) , which snapped up Shopzilla for $525 million.

Shop.com has to like its chances for a very healthy liquidating event, given that history. But it isn't sitting idle. VentureWire reports that the additional cash will fund marketing and customer service initiatives aimed at boosting traffic. Other priorities probably include the company's shopping platform, which operates in multiple languages and currencies and combines data from different merchants into a single, customizable Web page. Hmmmm. ... That's exactly the kind of Rule Breaking innovation my wife would really appreciate. You won't tell her, will you?

Finally, in Baby Breaker public offerings, Caribou Coffee (Nasdaq: CBOU  ) debuted Thursday with a whimper. After opening at $15.50 -- well above its IPO price of $14 a share -- the stock of the wannabe Starbucks (Nasdaq: SBUX  ) declined sharply to close at $13. It's down an additional 11% in Friday's midday trading. Ouch. Don't you need rope and a harness for that kind of descent?

That's it for this week. See you back here next Friday, when we continue the quest for the next ultimate growth stock.

For more Rule Breaking Foolishness:

  • Who are the giant killers and what can they do for your portfolio?
  • You can find out which are the four stocks to buy in 2006.
  • Sometimes insiders buy for all the right reasons. Who was at it this week?

Netflix.Marvel. AOL. Starbucks. Find out how David Gardner landed these and other multibaggers by taking a risk-free trial to Motley Fool Rule Breakers today. Your portfolio will thank you.

eBay is a Motley Fool Stock Advisor recommendation.

Fool contributor Tim Beyers has been to Starbucks so many times this week, he's actually beginning to miss his basement office. Tim didn't own stock in any of the companies mentioned in this story at the time of publication. You can find out what is in his portfolio by checking Tim's Fool profile, which is here. The Motley Fool has an ironclad disclosure policy.


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