Bavarian Nordic adding Switzerland plant in $270m Emergent asset buy

The Bern facility forms part of a deal to acquire a portfolio of travel vaccines from Emergent Biosolutions and will strengthen Bavarian Nordic’s manufacturing network.

Danish drugmaker Bavarian Nordic has struck a deal to buy numerous vaccine assets from Emergent, including the approved oral vaccines Vivotif and Vaxchora, for typhoid and cholera respectively. Bavarian Nordic will also add late-stage Chikungunya candidate, which could launch in 2025.

The deal also bolsters Bavarian Nordic’s global footprint, with the firm set to add US-based R&D facilities related to the development of the Chikungunya vaccine, and a biologics manufacturing facility in Bern, Switzerland.

Bavarian Nordic will add Emergent’s Bern, Switzerland plant in the $270m deal

The 16,000 m2 plant has capabilities for mammalian, microbial, viral drug substance, and drug product production, and includes a bacterial fermenter to a 4,000 L scale, 200 L cell culture equipment, a large-scale bulk lyophilizer, and production lines that include harvest capabilities by flow-through centrifuge or tangential flow filtration (TFF) system.

Both Vivotif and Vaxchora are manufactured at Bern but in a conference call yesterday Bavarian Nordic laid the foundations to increase production and insource manufacturing of its existing portfolio over time.

The firm also said the plant would expand its European GMP manufacturing footprint, allow the introduction of new technologies, and complement its current capabilities in Kvistgaard, Denmark. The Danish site has recently undergone a $75 million expansion to add a fill/finish facility.

“The addition of further manufacturing capabilities provides us with greater flexibility and scale in production, as we continue our preparations for the launch of several new products over the next few years,” said Paul Chaplin, CEO of Bavarian Nordic.

Bavarian Nordic will pay Emergent $270 million upfront, with a further $110 million to paid depending on certain milestones. Around 280 staff will be taken on by Bavarian Nordic across the Bern and US R&D sites.