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Bionano Genomics Seeks Reverse Stock Split

NEW YORK – Optical genome mapping platform maker Bionano Genomics is seeking a reverse stock split of its common stock, according to a recent regulatory filing.

In a letter on Monday, the company asked its shareholders to support the proposal, detailed in a proxy statement filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission last week, at the upcoming annual stockholder meeting on June 14.

"We believe that if the reverse split proposal is not approved, our ability to prudently raise capital may be compromised, our ability to attract and retain critical talent may be impacted, and our ability to act strategically with regard to the use of our equity in future opportunistic transactions may be constrained, among other things," Bionano President and CEO Erik Holmlin urged investors.

In the letter, Holmlin delineated three goals the company hopes to achieve through a reverse stock split: a potential improvement in the marketability and liquidity of its common stock, an effective increase of the number of shares of common stock available to issue, and ongoing compliance with Nasdaq listing requirements.

Rather than choosing a specific reverse split ratio at this time, Bionano proposed a range between 1-for-5 and 1-for-10, hoping to give the company flexibility to implement a reverse stock split at a ratio that "reflects the board’s then-current assessment."

According to Bionano, the closing price of its common stock was below $1.00 for the 10 consecutive business days between April 17 and April 28, reaching a low of $.68 per share on April 21. If the closing price remains below $1.00 for 30 consecutive business days, the company would fall out of compliance with Nasdaq’s minimum bid price requirement.

Holmlin assured investors, however, that the reverse stock split proposal "is not a sign of distress for Bionano" but rather "a mechanism to enable management to prudently raise capital in support of our long-term strategy."

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