BioNTech expects deliveries of vaccines adapted to the Omicron variant as early as October

BERLIN, Aug 8 (Reuters) – BioNTech plans to begin shipments of two vaccines suitable for the Omicron variant of the coronavirus as early as October, which will help boost demand in the fourth quarter, the German pharmaceutical group said on Monday. also reaffirmed its vaccine sales forecast for the year.

Demand for vaccines, of which more than 3.6 billion doses have been shipped worldwide, is declining as most people in Western countries have already received three or four doses.

Recall campaigns using doses specifically targeting the Omicron variant should, however, stimulate demand in the fall. Pending regulatory approval, BioNTech said its two tailored vaccines would be available in time for campaigns.

Second-quarter revenue and net profit both fell about 40% from the same period a year earlier, to 3.2 billion euros and 1.672 billion euros, respectively.

BioNTech has reaffirmed its sales forecast for vaccines in 2022, i.e. 13 to 17 billion euros, against 19 billion last year. Its partner Pfizer forecasts $32 billion in sales of COVID-19 vaccines for the year.

“With our strong year-to-date performance, we believe we are on track to meet our previous financial guidance for the current fiscal year,” said Jens Holstein, Chief Financial Officer of BioNTech.

“Through our initiatives around variant-matched COVID-19 vaccine candidates, we expect demand to increase in our key markets in Q4 2022, pending regulatory approval.”

BioNTech and Pfizer submitted one of the matched vaccines, which targets the BA.1 subvariant, to the European Medicines Agency last month, with delivery pending approval.

The other, which targets the BA.4 and BA.5 subvariants, as recommended by the US drug regulatory authority, will begin clinical trials this month, with the first doses also expected to begin shipping as soon as possible. october. (Report Patricia Weiss and Miranda Murray, French version Elena Vardon, edited by Kate Entringer)

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