Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Indifference St.
marat the businessman
Calypte lands crucial financing
By Alec Rosenberg, BUSINESS WRITER
Shares of Calypte Biomedical Corp. rose more than 60 percent Tuesday after the Alameda maker of urine-based HIV tests announced a $10 million equity financing agreement with Marr Group.
Calypte, which ended June 30 with $15,000 in cash, is trying to build the company back up after almost shutting down a year ago.
Marr Group will receive 20 million restricted shares of Calypte at 50 cents a share, the closing price Friday. Shares rose 32 cents Tuesday to 82 cents. London-based Marr, a private group controlled by the Safin family, invested another $2.5 million in Calypte a month earlier.
"We feel that the current market is extremely strong for the products that Calypte has approved and ready to deliver," said Marat Safin, Marr principal. "We are confident in the distribution network that is being put in place and impressed with the management team."
Calypte almost closed last year, but Executive Chairman Tony Cataldo joined the firm and brought in funding to keep it alive. The money-losing firm added Magic Johnson to its board in April, did a 1:30 reverse stock split in May and brought in a new president in June. Calypte said in July that it cut its work force 15 percent to 60 and that it will close its Alameda manufacturing plant in the next year, consolidating production to its plant in Maryland.
"With Marr's latest investment of $10 million, we are confident that the company is sufficiently funded to execute our business plan," Cataldo said.
Calypte is working to expand distribution of its urine-based HIV screening tests. Also, it is developing a rapid HIV urine test that, instead of taking days, would give results in five minutes, similar to a home-pregnancy test.
Marat: Last question: what do you think of me? Dinara: You are my god! When you play, I love
to see you. When you lose, I am even sadder than when it is me. When you are wounded, I suffer.
When you speak to me, I drink your words. When you come to see me playing, I am with the angels.