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Market Capitalization of German Cord Blood Bank Vita 34 More than Doubles

In early January 2014, the magazine Der Aktionaer published an analytical report which indicated a potential upside of 150% for the German cord blood stem cell bank Vita 34, indicating a target price of €10 per share. Over the course of several days following the publication of the report, Vita 34 shares grew more than 100% and as of January 23, 2014, were selling for €6.6 per share. The company’s market capitalization stood at €20 million.

According to the report, Vita 34 is on the threshold of very promising development. The article in Der Aktionaer noted that the promising outlook for the cell technology sector has been confirmed by the growth in US biotech indexes, including the stocks of such companies as Geron and Osiris, as a result of encouraging clinical trial results for stem cell therapy on brain tumors and heart disease at Harvard University and Columbia University. The report also notes the positive share price dynamics of Cardio3 Biosciences (Belgium), which is completing phase III clinical trials for treatment of heart disease using autologous stem cells.

Vita 34 was created in 1997 and is Europe’s second largest cord blood bank, with approximately 100,000 samples in storage as of January 2014. The company’s headquarters and laboratory are located in Leipzig. Vita 34 cooperates with leading European universities and R&D centers with the aim of expanding the scope of applications for cord blood stem cells. The company actively participates in fundamental research on the proliferation and differentiation of cord blood stem cells and also holds clinical trials on their application in the treatment of cardiovascular and neurological diseases, type 1 diabetes and a number of inherited diseases. Over the past 16 years of its work Vita 34 has provided 25 cord blood stem cell samples preparations for allogeneic (closely related) and autologous transplantations to treat patients with such ailments as type 1 diabetes, leukemia, anemia, cerebral palsy, brain injuries and beta thalassemia.

The Vita 34’s shareholding structure includes three major shareholders and a free float accounting for approximately 48% of the company’s shares. The largest shareholder of Vita 34 is the Russian biotech company Human Stem Cells Institute (HSCI), which holds a 17.2% stake in Vita 34 (see: http://ir.vita34.com/cgi-bin/show.ssp?companyName=vita34&language=English&id=3400). The provision of personal cord blood stem cell storage services was the first commercial project for HSCI: the company’s cord blood bank Gemabank® is the largest such facility in Russia. HSCI also owns a 50% stake in Hemafund, the leading family cord blood bank in Ukraine.

On January 7, 2014, Vita 34 announced the acquisition of a 75.24% stake in the fourth largest German cord blood bank Stellacure GmbH with the aim of increasing its share and reinforcing its dominant position on the German market. Dr. André Gerth, CEO of Vita 34, noted that he currently sees “a growing tendency to consolidation on the market of private umbilical cord blood banking.”

27 January 2014