Bioheart IPO Barely Beating

Today’s understated headline award goes to The Wall Street Journal, for this:

Bioheart Goes Public With a Modest Offering

That’s like saying that the Knicks are having a modest season. Or that Lindsay Lohan is modest.

Bioheart is a Sunrise, Fla.-based company that uses stem cell therapies to regenerate damaged heart muscles. It filed one year ago for a $35 million IPO, and later upped the target to $57.6 million. Soon after, however, the company switched underwriters and began cutting the asking price.

By the time Bioheart actually went public this week, the offering raised just under $5.8 million. No, I’m not making a decimal mistake — that’s the number you get when you multiple 1.1 million shares times 5.25 per share. And it hasn’t even been able to maintain that meager price, losing value both yesterday and today. At last check, Bioheart was trading at around $4.88 per share.

The obvious question here is: Why go public? Plenty of other companies have pulled back when either they or the markets weren’t ready, and Bioheart certainly could have raised $5.8 million from venture capitalists. After all, they had already plugged in over $40 million.

A company spokesman told the WSJ that Bioheart’s public status will make it easier to raise additional funding (which he admitted it needs). Maybe that sounded like a good plan when the company still hoped to secure double-digits. But today it just looks silly. And sad.