Agenus, Inc. has announced the launch of their own security token called the Biotech Electronic Security Token (BEST). The first-of-its-kind STO has far-reaching implications for the pharmaceutical industry and its allocation of capital.
Fintech and biotech should be a match for one another. After all, biotech requires capital investments and allocation just like any other market sector. However, tokenized securities have been slow to include themselves in biotech discussions. But this is now changing, with Agenus Inc. announcing the launch of their Biotech Electronic Security Token (BEST) which will put blockchain alongside traditional financing for both institutional and individual investors in the biotech industry.
The asset to be tokenized by BEST is the AGEN2034, a PD-1 inhibitor drug which generated some $15 billion in revenue in 2018.
Given that drug development amassed capital investments over $150 billion in 2017, security tokens can provide the biopharmaceutical industry with more of the capital they need by making liquidity easier and breaking down barriers to entry.
Agenus has decided to release their BEST token because it is their calculation that a large portion of future US assets will fall under this same category in the future. Tokenization specifically has many advantages for the biotech industry. For example, BEST will allow for:
- Direct investments in clinical trials
- Higher liquidity
- Valuations based on “revenue per dose.”
- A much broader reach of capital
The bottom line here, though, is more than just money. The combination of drug assets with blockchain may drive an altogether new level of participation. As John Nosta writes in his opinion piece announcing the news on Forbes:
Patients, advocacy groups, payors, clinicians, and a host of other stakeholders, in combination with traditional investors, may now invests in a drug therapy where a powerful emotional investment may have already taken place.
Do you believe in the transformative power of blockchain technology in the biotech industry? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
Image courtesy of Agenus.