Amyris Prices IPO Below Range at $16

It’s D-Day for Amyris, but the next-gen biofuel producer could be off to a shaky start. Amyris has priced shares for its IPO at $16, below its previously anticipated range of $18 to $20. At least 5.3 million of Amyris’ shares will start trading later today under the symbol AMRS.

The IPO has raised $84.8 million. Just two weeks ago Amyris had been planning to raise closer to $100 million, and as high as $122 million. The company plans to spend that money on factory equipment it hopes will bring its technology to commercial scale.

Amyris is not producing its next-gen biofuel at commercial scale yet, and doesn’t plan to do so until 2011. The company booked its first revenue from a $24.3 million federal grant, awarded on a conditional basis late last year, in May. A good chunk of Amyris’ current revenues comes from reselling ethanol produced by other companies.

According to its filings, Amyris brought in revenues of $26.36 million for the first six months of the year, and had a net loss of $36.53 million. Backed by more than $244 million from a long list of investors, including Khosla Ventures and Kleiner Perkins, Amyris says as of June 30, 2010, it had accumulated a deficit of $156.5 million.

We’ll be watching the stock closely to see how it fares today.

A variety of greentech companies have abandoned offerings or suffered weak IPOs; Tesla was the exception. Thin-film solar firm Trony Solar dropped its IPO plans in August, Solyndra withdrew its much-anticipated IPO earlier this year, rare earth element developer Molycorp (s mcp) priced its IPOs below expectations, and Shanghai’s geothermal company Nobao Renewable Energy gutted its march to the New York Stock Exchange, too. Another next-gen biofuel developer, Gevo, filed an S-1 earlier this year, planning to raise up to $150 million in an IPO, but at least one analyst thinks Gevo will likely raise closer to between $80 million and $100 million.

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