Pall and Cytiva reaping $1bn coronavirus bonus for Danaher

Danaher Corporation says its bioprocessing businesses Pall Biotech and Cytiva have secured over $1 billion in COVID-19 related orders and expects further windfalls as vaccines and therapies reach approval.

When the coronavirus pandemic emerged earlier this year, commentators noted the financial opportunity for bioprocess vendors in supporting industry’s efforts in developing and commercializing vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics.

As the year progresses, these opportunities are materializing in quarterly statements, with Danaher Corporation the latest company showing a COVID-19 tailwind across its bioprocessing businesses.

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“Within Life Sciences, bioprocessing demand continues to lead the way,” said CEO Rainer Blair during a Q3 financial call. “COVID-19 vaccine and therapeutic activity increased meaningfully during the quarter with development and production scale of occurring at an accelerated pace.”

Danaher owns Pall Biotech and Cytiva, the former Biopharma Business of GE Life Sciences. “Collectively these businesses increased orders by more than 60% in the quarter, driven by our comprehensive offering across the bio-processing workflow.”

While bioprocessing activity remains robust in line with the trend of the past few years, COVID-based projects were the main driver, having added “well over $1 billion” of orders between Cytiva and Pall Biotech. “And that’s before any vaccines have been officially approved by the FDA,” Blair said.

“Pall and Cytiva’s products and solutions are involved in the majority of the more than 400 vaccine and therapeutic projects currently underway globally, including every Operation Warp Speed COVID-19 vaccine in the US.”

Expansions

As projects move into commercialization, demand is unlikely to drop. Bioprocess peers such as Thermo Fisher are investing in their capacity and accelerating expansion projects to keep up with this demand.

According to Blair, “we absolutely are and continue to invest in capacity expansions.”

He noted the numerous expansions at Cytiva underway when Danaher acquired the firm in April for $21 billion, and said that these projects are being accelerated. Last month, the division announced a five-year $500 million plan to support continued double-digit biopharma growth and a COVID-19 tailwind.

“You can expect additional investments here in Q4,” Blair said, adding “as we continue to go into 2021, you will see continued investment.”

For the third quarter, Danaher reported $5.88 billion in sales. The firm does not break down the revenue across its businesses but did say life sciences core revenue was up 18.5% led by core growth rates of 20% or more at Pall Biotech and Beckman Life Sciences, and more than 35% at Cytiva and IDT.

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