Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Details Emerging on Possible Shape of Big Biotech Loan Program

The California stem cell agency today served up a tasty, albeit late morsel to chew on prior to Wednesday's session on the proposed biotech loan program, which could total as much as $750 million.

The document outlined CIRM's basic thinking at this stage, which includes a staff review of loan applications to see whether they merit further review by scientists.

The document seeks input concerning which of the intellectual policy rules for nonprofits should be used in the loan program. It also asks for comment on the following:

Debt Structure/Terms: E.g., five to seven years?

Interest Rates: Adjusted per risk analysis and/or balancing feasibility and program goals?

Subordination: Should CIRM loan be subordinate to bank, working capital lines, venture loans, et cetera?

Security: What would be appropriate?

Milestones: Appropriate benchmarks for payments over five to seven year term?

The hearing begins at 11 a.m. in Burlingame, Ca.

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