Pfizer bags $37bn from COVID vax with another $32bn expected in 2022

Pfizer has lauded its clinical development and vaccine manufacturing capabilities as it hopes to produce a total of 4 billion doses of Comirnaty by the end of 2022. 

Through its partnership with BioNTech, Pfizer became the first company to bring a messenger RNA-based product to market, namely the COVID-19 vaccine Comirnaty (BNT162b2), which received emergency use approval in December 2020. 

This week, Pfizer told shareholders during its Q4 2021 earnings call that the jab has generated $36.8 billion sales worldwide for the full year in 2021. Looking ahead, however, sales will drop, the firm predicted, though $32 billion of sales is still expected for 2022.

Photo by Mat Napo on Unsplash

“While we can’t predict what may be needed due to omicron or other variants, I would also caution you that there is less potential upside to this guidance through the year, compared to the situation we faced in 2021 when the vaccine was newly available, and few people had received any doses of the vaccine,” Pfizer’s chief financial officer Frank D’Amelio told stakeholders. 

As of February, this year, the firm said it has delivered six out of 10 doses of all COVID-19 vaccines in the US and is on track to manufacture a total of four billion doses of the jab by the end of 2022.  

While the pandemic has demonstrated that it’s not that easy to deliver mRNA vaccines at scale, Pfizer has emerged as a leader in this space. With decades of experience on our side, we’ve developed what is arguably the most efficient clinical development and vaccine manufacturing capabilities the world has ever seen,” said Pfizer’s CEO Albert Bourla.  

Pfizer claims its “unsurpassed” capabilities are what makes it an attractive partner across a wide range of deals.  

AGC Biologics  

Meanwhile, contract development manufacturing organization (CDMO) AGC Biologics has expanded its partnership with Pfizer’s partner BioNTech to supply additional plasmid DNA (pDNA) starting material for the COVID-19 vaccine from its Heidelberg, Germany facility.  

“Another important thing to note is the speed at which we are working to bring this material to BioNTech to support their vaccine development efforts. In situations such as this one, when developers and pharmaceutical companies have immediate and timely needs, we are dedicated to working with them to find a solution that gets them materials as soon as possible,” a spokesperson for the firm told us.

The CDMO first began its relationship with Pfizer and BioNTech in June 2021, providing raw material for the vaccine. The expansion of the collaboration is on the back of Pfizer/BioNTech developing an Omicron-based COVID-19 vaccine with first batches anticipated to be ready for delivery by the end of March 2022, the firm said.