Clavis Pharma has raised 154 million Norwegian kroner, around 19 million euros, in a private placement, the proceeds from which will be used to advance development of its novel cancer therapeutics.

The Oslo-based group issued some 4.4 million new shares, and noted that the private placement, which represents 17.3% of the current outstanding share capital, was "well oversubscribed at the issue price". Some of the funds raised will be used to finance a late-stage trial of elacytarabine in late-stage in late-stage acute myeloid leukaemia patients, data from which is expected in mid-2012.

Part of the proceeds will also go towards a Phase II study for CP-4126 in pancreatic cancer, which is being carried out in collaboration with the USA's Clovis Oncology. Last week the two firms expanded their pact and signed a deal on global rights for the anti-cancer agent which could be worth up to $205 million to Clavis.

Olav Hellebo, Clavis chief executive, said the fundraising and the extended deal with Clovis "demonstrate the confidence investors and partners have in our pipeline and our LVT technology for creating new and improved cancer therapies from existing gold-standard drugs". He added that Clavis Pharma is "very well-positioned going into 2011 to generate significant value for shareholders as we deliver a number of key development milestones".