BioMimetic, LP led local stocks in '12

M&A, health reform big influences on past year's performances

The promise of a blockbuster medical treatment and the evidence of a resurgent housing market helped BioMimetic Therapeutics and Louisiana-Pacific post the best 2012 performances among public companies headquartered in the Nashville area.

BioMimetic is set to be acquired by Memphis-based Wright Medical for up to $380 million. Wright announced its deal in November, saying Cool Springs-based BioMimetic — and especially its Augment bone graft platform awaiting FDA approval — will bring the company's biologics business a growth platform. Even before news of the deal, BioMimetic stock (Ticker: BMTI) had climbed more than 30 percent since January.

Investors piled back into downtown-based LP in the second half of 2012 as it became apparent that the housing market had worked through many of its problems and that builders were again kicking off projects across many parts of the country. After climbing — albeit haltingly — more than 30 percent in the first half of the year, LP shares (Ticker: LPX) have added another 77 percent since June 30.

Just behind LP were Acadia Healthcare and Delek US Holdings, whose shares also more than doubled last year. At Acadia, Joey Jacobs and his team followed up on their late-2011 IPO promises of acquiring and turning around facilities. Delek's story was similar in that the acquisition in late 2011 of an Arkansas refinery helped bring in a gusher of cash that let execs invest in upgrades and pay investors numerous special dividends.

Many of the other companies doing well — click here for our full rundown — are health care names helped in varying degrees by the June Supreme Court health care reform decision and the November re-election of President Obama. Investors like certainty where they can get it and both of those events gave many health care entities a better idea of how their future will look.

The past year also was a year in which a number of local companies gave up their public listings after being acquired by a peer or taken private by private-equity firms. Restaurant chains O'Charley's and J. Alexander's sold out to American Blue Ribbon Holdings, whose leaders promptly relocated their headquarters to the 100 Oaks area, while HealthSpring's board sold to Cigna and the private-equity arm of JPMorgan Chase paid more than $1 billion for health care technology play M*Modal.

For our look back at local stocks' performance in 2011 and 2010, click here.