BioNTech to deliver 1.8bn doses this year

BioNTech to deliver 1.8bn doses this year

Syringes containing Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine are seen at the Impfzentrum Basel Stadt vaccination centre at the Congress Center of the Messe Basel fairground in Basel, Switzerland, on March 18. (Reuters photo)
Syringes containing Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine are seen at the Impfzentrum Basel Stadt vaccination centre at the Congress Center of the Messe Basel fairground in Basel, Switzerland, on March 18. (Reuters photo)

FRANKFURT: BioNTech said on Monday that its order backlog together with partner Pfizer for delivery of Covid-19 vaccines this year had grown to 1.8 billion doses, underscoring its role as a major global supplier of immunisation shots.

That was up from 1.4 billion doses announced in March.

Based on these delivery contracts, the firm said it expects about €12.4 billion ($15.1 billion) in revenues from the product this year, including sales, milestone payments from partners and a share of gross profit in the partners’ territories, up from a previous projection of €9.8 billion.

The partners, which have been spared the type of production setbacks that hobbled rivals AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson, have repeatedly lifted projected delivery volumes amid a global scramble to speed up vaccination campaigns.

Earlier on Monday, BioNTech unveiled plans to set up a new factory in Singapore to produce several hundred million doses of its mRNA vaccines per year from 2023.

BioNTech's partner for China, Fosun Pharma, said on Sunday it would provide a factory with an annual capacity of up to 1 billion doses of the Covid-19 vaccine under a joint venture with BioNTech.

That followed a contract with the European Union over up to 1.8 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccines for 2021-23, to cover booster shots, donations and reselling of doses.

BioNTech's first-quarter total revenues were €2.05 billion, up from €27.7 million a year earlier, inflated by the vaccine, and including an estimated €1.75 billion from BioNTech’s share of gross profit from sales in Pfizer’s territories.

Quarterly net profit jumped to €1.13 billion, compared to a 53.4-million-euro loss in the year-earlier period.

The company said there was no evidence its current vaccine will need to be adapted to fight new viral variants but said it had developed strategies to address such variants should the need arise.

BioNTech reiterated that output capacity for the vaccine would reach 3 billion doses by the end of 2021, and more than 3 billion doses in 2022.

Pfizer last week said the pair was targeting production of as much as 4 billion doses of the shot next year, mostly for low- and middle-income countries.

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