The firm had pulled back from the sector in the mid-2000s. Why return now? "Philadelphia and the surrounding area is a hub for healthcare companies," and "it's an area of investment banking where collectively think we can compete with the right team," said Chris White, head of investment banking at Janney, an arm of customer-owned Penn Mutual Life Insurance Co.
"This was a decent year for IPOs in this sector; there've been 13 IPOs in healthcare, as we define it. A couple of biotech companies, nine specialty pharmaceutical comanies. About 12% of all (U.S.) capital raises and IPOs have been for healthcare companies, which is roughly the same proportion as healthcare in the S&P 500," White said. By contrast, "oil and gas is only about 8 percent of the volume. Biotech is doing well."