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Martek plans to offer shares to public


Martek Biosciences Corp. of Columbia plans to offer 2 million shares of new stock to the public, the company said yesterday, announcing it has registered the proposed offering with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Based on yesterday's closing price of $14.50 a share, the offering would raise $29 million before investment banking commissions and other expenses. Martek went public in 1993 at $7 a share.

Martek intends to use the proceeds from the offering to market and develop its consumer nutritional products, to pay for capital expenditures including potential expansion of the company's baby formula supplement factory, to fund clinical studies and trials of drugs and for general corporate purposes.

Martek also announced that it lost $2.4 million, or 24 cents a share, during the three months that ended July 31. Martek lost $1.3 million, or $.16 per share, during the same quarter of 1994. This year's third-quarter loss was less than analysts expected.

Research expenses continued to outstrip modest revenues from Formulaid, its baby formula supplement which has not yet been approved for sale in the U.S. but is on the European market, and from payments for research.

Martek lost $6.7 million or $.75 per share, for the first three quarters of Martek's fiscal year. Last year Martek lost $3.2 million during the same period.

Losses are typical during the early years of biotechnology companies such as Martek because of difficult research and long U.S. product approval processes.

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