The Lazarus Effect

Santini, Laura
June 2003
Investment Dealers' Digest;6/30/2003, Vol. 69 Issue 26, p10
Trade Publication
Alkermes Inc. has come a long way in a year, from having been in debt to having neatly eliminated all of its bond obligations. It was due to a provision the company had embedded in its outstanding convertible securities. A year ago, Alkermes was in sorry shape. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration had rejected a joint proposal by Alkermes and Johnson & Johnson Inc. to market an injectable version of the latter's lucrative schizophrenia drug, Risperdal. As the news broke, investors slammed Alkermes, sending shares of the Cambridge, Massachusetts-based drug delivery technology company down nearly 70%, to close at $5.15 on July 1, 2002. Two weeks ago, the company activated an auto-conversion feature embedded in its outstanding convertible securities — a unique provision that allows Alkermes to wipe out $174.6 million in bond obligations, leaving the company free of debt. Alkermes was able to transform $198.8 million in outstanding debt into $114.6 million in 6.52% convertible subordinated notes, set to expire in 2009 — and Alkermes also offered bondholders an extra $60 million in new bonds.


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