I am a Pantomath (google search fanatic) and I remember reading about the deadly coronavirus in some American research paper where it claimed that the human coronavirus was first discovered in the 1960s. In 1984, the researchers upheld that there was no cure as such for the virus and that it will be difficult to manage it at the time of an outbreak.
So, when it hit us first in December 2019, I witnessed my worst nightmare coming to life. Without hope of any vaccine in near sight, we started to live under the perpetual fear of death approaching us inch by inch every passing day. Some called it the third world war, while others, Nostradamus’ prediction of the world, having come to an end.
But the medical frat didn’t quite agree with the prophecy and got down to working on an effective vaccine. And then we received the first ray of hope with the first-ever vaccine for coronavirus, made jointly by Oxford University and the pharmaceutical company- AstraZeneca. Then came a few more. And then there was a sea of vaccines, and no looking back at the nightmare!
As of May 25, a total of 1.84 billion people have been administered vaccines worldwide, which means 24 doses for every 100 people. China is leading with 682 M vaccine doses and US is next in the race with 296 M, and India is third with 213 M.
And having raked in a combined $4.23 billion for their developers, it is further predicted that the five top therapeutics will yield a combined $38.5 billion in sales, and from which nearly two-thirds (65%) revenue i.e $25.2 billion is expected to be netted by BNT162b2-developed by Pfizer and BioNtech ($14.3 billion) and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines ($10.9 billion) together.
Apart from the above, South Korea’s AstraZeneca-SK Bio, Serum Institute of India’s Covishield, AstraZeneca EU, Janssen and Moderna of the US and China’s Sinopharm shots have been listed by WHO for emergency use (The WHO’s emergency use listing is a COVAX facility vaccine supply and international obtaining condition).
With the competition heating up between the vaccine makers, let’s have a look at the top 10 vaccine manufacturers, and what they have in store for us:
PFIZER, the pharmaceutical company that develops and produces vaccines for immunology, oncology, cardiology, endocrinology, and neurology, together with BioNtech received the first authorization (for emergency use) in European Union for COVID-19 vaccine in adolescents-12 years of age and older. Further, Pfizer, which is ready to offer 50 M doses to India between July and October is likely to get indemnity from liability with riders according to Health Ministry’s sources so that the supply of vaccines is not affected. UK and US have already granted them indemnity from lawsuits in case of any unforeseen complications.
Headquarter: New York City
Market Cap: $217.13B
Total revenue: $46.407B (2021)
Pfizer Inc. NYSE: PFE 38.79 USD +0.29 (0.75%)
Total assets: $154,229 M
No. of employees: 78500 ( In US )
Subsidiaries: With 50 plants all over the world, some of its subsidiaries are Pfizer Japan Inc, Pfizer Canada Inc, Pfizer Australia Pty ltd. Amplyx Pharmaceuticals Inc., Pfizer Private ltd, CovX Research LLC, Meduvation, Therachon AG, Pfizer Ventures ltd etc.
Biopharmaceutical New Technologies is a next-gen biotechnology company that develops and manufactures active immunotherapies for patient-specific approaches to the treatment of diseases. It is the world’s 376th most valuable pharmaceutical company.
Headquarter: Mainz, Germany
Market cap: $52.99B
Total revenue: $63 B (2019)
NASDAQ : BNTX 219.40 USD +13.26 (6.43%) 3 June, 4.52 am GMT-4 Disclaimer
Total assets: $2649 M
No. of employees: 1323
Subsidiaries: BioNtech Innovative Manufacturing Services Gmbh, BioNtech Delivery Technology, BioNtech Small Molecules, BioNtech Rna Pharmaceutical, BioNtech Diagnostic GmbH, BioNtech Cell, and Gene Therapies, BioNtech Research and Development, and many more.
Moderna made its entry with a $40 M round for messenger RNA- mRNA COVID-19 vaccines. The company, which hitherto excelled with 24 vaccine entrants including seasonal flu, HIV and the Nipah virus, is gifting a second COVID-19 vaccine that will be easier to store and administer than the existing vaccines.
Founded: September 2010
Headquarter: Massachusetts, USA
Market cap: $76.93 B
NASDAQ: 191.86 USD+0.26 (0.14 %) 3 June, closed at 4.45 am
Total revenue: $763 M (2020)
Total assets: $7.336 B (2020)
No. of employees: 1500 +
AstraZeneca plc is a British-Swedish multinational pharmaceutical and biotechnology company with headquarters at the Cambridge Biomedical Campus in Cambridge, England. It manufactures products for therapies involving oncology, cardiovascular, renal, metabolism, and respiratory.
Founded: 6 April 1999
Headquarter: Cambridge UK
Market cap: 52.99 B
NASDAQ: BNTX 219.40 USD + 13.26 (6.43%) 3 June, 5.42 am GMT-4 Disclaimer
Total revenue: $27.583 B
Total assets: $66729 M
No. of employees: 76100
Curevac: The global biopharmaceutical company in the field of messenger RNA(mRNA) was founded in 2000 in Tubingen, Germany, and it opened the world to the potential of mRNA to treat rare diseases including cancer therapies. Then, they collaborated with Bayer for its COVOD-19 vaccine named CVnCoV for coronavirus.
Headquarter: Tubingen, Germany
Total market cap: $21.343 B
Stock price: CVAC (NASDAQ) 114.61 + 6.33 (+5.85%) 3 June, 4.00 pm GMT-4-Disclaimer
Total revenue: $2.04 B
Total assets in 2019: $64.18 M
No. of employees: Less than 500
Subsidiaries: CureVac Inc., CureVac Real Estate, CureVac AG
Bayer is a life science company and has been there for 150 years and excels in the areas of health and agriculture. It is one of the largest pharmaceutical companies, and its first known product was aspirin.
Founded: 1 August 1863
Headquarter: Leverkusen, Germany
Market Cap AG: 51.76 EUR-0.28(0.54%) 3 June 12.26 pm GMT +2 Disclaimer
Revenue: 13985 € million (2020)
Total assets: 83289 € million (2020)
No. of employees: 103824
The largest vaccine maker in the world, and ranked at number 5 among its top competitors makes Covishield. From June, Serum is expected to increase the production of Covishield by 40 per cent( 90 M doses a month from 65 M). Moreover, the company has also applied to Drug Authority to manufacture Covid Vaccine Sputnik V.
Headquarter: Poona, India
Total revenue: $685.051M
Total assets: $246.03M
No. of employees: 4000
Vaccine : Covishield
Subsidiaries: Vakzine Project Management GmbH, Bilthoven Biologicals BV
Bharat Biotech: Is a biotechnological company engaged in drug discovery, drug development, manufacture of vaccines, healthcare, bio-therapeutics, and pharmaceuticals.
Headquarter: Hyderabad, India
Market Cap: $35.894 M
Share price: 39.57 EUR -0.12(0.30%) 3 June 4.24 pm GMT +2 Disclaimer
Total funding: $13.7M
No. of employees: 1034
Subsidiaries: Chiron Behring Vaccines
Sinovac Biotech Ltd is a Chinese biopharmaceutical company that focuses on the research, development, manufacture, and commercialization of vaccines for infectious diseases. In 2020, it had secured $515 M to boost the production of COVID-19. Their vaccine CoronaVac has been approved by WHO this Tuesday for emergency use against COVID-19. It is the eighth coronavirus vaccine approved by the WHO.
Headquarter: Beijing, China
Market Cap: 6.47 as of February 4, 3:43 PM EST
Total funding: $96.3M
No. of employees: 910
Janssen from Johnson and Johnson(parent organization) is a leading pharmaceutical company in the United States and specializes in therapeutic areas consisting of cardiovascular and metabolism, immunology, infectious diseases and vaccines, neuroscience, oncology, and pulmonary hypertension. Their single-shot vaccine is expected to resume in the US for all adults aged 18 and older following CDC and FDA decisions.
Headquarter: Leiden, Netherlands
Market Cap: $445.78 B
Total revenue: $233.79 M
No. of employees: 120
Subsidiaries: Janssen Biotech, Janssen Vaccines
Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology is a medical research institute and it is operated under the purview of the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation.
The Russian COVID-19 vaccine Sputnik V (Gam-COVID-Vac) is an adenoviral-based, two-part vaccine against the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus. Initially produced in Russia, Sputnik V uses a weakened virus to deliver small parts of a pathogen and stimulate an immune response.
Russia’s Sputnik V has been deemed to be safe and works in a way similar to the Oxford-AstraZeneca jab which is being made in India as Covishield. Sputnik V gives around 92% protection against Covid-19, late-stage trial results published in The Lancet revealed.
On 21 December 2020 the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), the Gamaleya National Center, AstraZeneca, and R-Pharm signed an agreement aimed at the development and implementation of a clinical research program to assess the immunogenicity and safety of the combined use of one of the components of the Sputnik V vaccine developed by the Gamaleya Center, and one of the components of the AZD1222 vaccine, developed by AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford. The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) is Russia’s sovereign wealth fund with reserved capital of $10 billion under management.
The number of vaccine manufacturers is increasing by the day and so is the supply. The demand for indemnity against lawsuits for unforeseen complications is increasing too. While some countries are cooperating with the manufacturers by granting them absolute indemnity, others are imposing conditional riders. Another problem is rich nations trying to outbid poor countries.
Moreover, as the fight for the vaccine intensifies; some manufacturers are complaining of threats for additional supply from other countries while others are getting involved in mud-slinging and spreading rumours about the efficacy (side-effects and allergic reactions included) of the vaccine of their competitors.
We are still in a life and death situation with our life having come to a standstill. Our economy had nose-dived to the point of Nadir last year. And now that we are on the path of recovery, at this fragile hour, total transparency in dealings and cooperation should be the order over fighting like cats and dogs for the vaccines.
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