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Houston biotech considering HQ move to SA
May 24, 2018

City Manager Sheryl Sculley said San Antonio officials have "worked diligently" on luring Houston-based biotech Kiromic Inc. CARLOS JAVIER SANCHEZ | SABJ

By W. Scott Bailey, Senior Reporter, San Antonio Business Journal

San Antonio is courting a Houston-based biotech that is considering moving its headquarters to the Alamo City.

Kiromic Inc., a clinical-stage company, is evaluating whether to shift its operations 200 miles to the west. San Antonio leaders are hopeful that a municipal incentive will be enough to close the deal.

The City Council is scheduled to vote on May 31 on whether to authorize the San Antonio Economic Development Corp., or SAEDC, to enter into an economic development agreement with Kiromic. The deal for council members to consider involves a $200,000 grant for the Houston company in return for moving its headquarters and business operations to San Antonio this year.

Under the proposed deal, Kiromic would agree to keep its operations in the Alamo City for at least five years. In addition, it would need to create and retain up to 20 jobs.

Mayor Ron Nirenberg said Kiromic is an attractive target because it’s an innovative biotech company that would bring drug research, development and manufacturing to San Antonio. It would move Phase I and II clinical trials to the Alamo City.

City Manager Sheryl Sculley said SAEDC officials and other community leaders “have worked diligently to recruit Kiromic to San Antonio.”

Sculley is confident the company will move here if council members approve the incentive deal, under which the SAEDC would get $200,000 of Series A preferred shares in Kiromic.

Founded in 2012, Kiromic is focused on developing the next generation of immunotherapy treatments for cancer and other diseases. The company is seeking to raise $12 million in Series A funding while it contemplates a possible move.

“Kiromic is certainly impressed by what the San Antonio community has to offer our bioscience company, particularly a collaborative ecosystem to continue our research, manufacturing and clinical trials,” Kiromic CEO Maurizio Chiriva Internati said in a statement.

Kiromic is already conducting some of its Phase I clinical trials in San Antonio as it evaluates potential new homes for the company.

“We believe San Antonio presents the best opportunity for our company to succeed in bringing revolutionary immunotherapy drugs to market,” Internati said.

The company plans to decide in 60 to 90 days on whether to move.

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