French speciality pharmaceuticals company Ipsen has priced its initial public offering (IPO) at 22.20 euros per share, at the lower end of the predicted range of 21.70 to 25.20 euros.

Ipsen said yesterday it expects to raise 324 million euros from the flotation, which values the company at 1.8 billion euros. This represents a reduction in expectations from the IPO: last month Ipsen said it hoped to raise around 400 million euros. Until now Ipsen has been wholly owned by Luxembourg-based company Mayroy, which is itself 85% owned by the Beaufour family.

Trading in the company’s shares kicked off this morning, and as this edition of PharmaTimes newsonline went to press were trading a little above the start price at 22.99 euros.

Ipsen's chief executive, Jean-Luc Belingard, said the recently the flotation would help Ipsen expand its presence in the US market, where it currently only operates an R&D facility. The companmy has filed for marketing approval for its Dysport (botulinum toxin type A complex) for neuromuscular disorders and Somatuline (lanreotide) for acromegaly and neuroendocrine tumours.

Last month, Ipsen said its sales should grow 6.5% to 7.5% a year between 2005 and 2008 period, after reporting that sales in the first nine-months of this year rose 9% to 607 million euros.