Korean biotech firms with major pipelines in cord blood banks and umbilical cord stem cells have enjoyed substantial stock price gains this year.
Cord blood-related business firms, such as Kang Stem Biotech, Green Cross Lab Cell, Sewon Cellon Tech, and CHA Biotech, all saw their share prices rising this year.
Green Cross Lab Cell, in particular, recently went on a rally for 12 consecutive trading days, receiving investment warning from the Korea Exchange. Its stock price surged 150 percent to 62,000 won ($56.9) per share as of Friday from 24,900 won on Jan. 2.
Investors paid attention to Green Cross Lab Cell especially since last month when the company was picked jointly with Canada’s Feldan Therapeutics to participate in a state project to develop a natural killer (NK) oncology drug using gene editing technology.
Shares of Medipost, the largest local provider of cord blood banks, also soared 86.4 percent to 101,200 won on Friday from 54,300 won on Jan. 2.
CHA Biotech entered the cord blood banking industry as a latecomer. Even though it was the 13th company to join the market, its rapid business growth helped the firm to become the nation’s third-largest cord blood provider. Its shares rose to 18,450 won on Friday from 12,400 won on Jan. 2.
According to the firm, Medipost is leading the local cord blood banking market with 42.83 percent market share, storing 210,697 cord blood banks. Sewon Celon Tech comes next with 16.24 percent market share, having 79,899 cord blood banks, followed by CHA Biotech with 13.61 percent share, having 66,948 cord blood banks.
CHA Biotech said it had the largest number of cord blood transplants in the domestic market.
Shares of Sewon Celon Tech, the second-largest provider of cord blood banking, also rose 8 percent this year to close at 3,225 won on Friday.
Other umbilical cord banking providers include Catholic Hematopoietic Stem Cell Bank at the Catholic University of Korea, Seoul Metropolitan Government Public Cord Blood Bank, Busan/Gyeongnam Cord Blood Bank at Dong-A University Hospital, Daegu Fatima Hospital’s Cord Blood Bank, Boryung I.Mom Cellbank at Boryung Biopharma, and Dream Cord Blood Bank at Green Cross Cell.
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