Pfizer, BioNTech Ink Deal To Supply Canada With Potential Covid-19 Vaccine

Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE on Wednesday agreed to supply the Government of Canada with their BNT162 mRNA-based vaccine candidate against SARS-CoV2, subject to clinical success and Health Canada approval.

Financial details of the agreement were not disclosed, but the terms were based on the timing of delivery and the volume of doses. As requested by the Government of Canada, deliveries of the vaccine candidate are planned for 2021, Pfizer (PFE) and BioNTech (BNTX) announced in a joint statement.

“In the face of this global health crisis, Pfizer’s purpose – breakthroughs that change patients’ lives – has taken on an even greater urgency,” said Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla. “We’re harnessing our scientific expertise, and we’re marshaling our manufacturing resources in an effort to ensure that the vaccine would be available as soon as possible, if our clinical trials prove successful and regulatory approval is granted.”

At the end of July, Pfizer and BioNTech inked a deal to supply Japan with 120 million doses of their experimental coronavirus vaccine in the first half of 2021 The two partners have already signed a deal to supply the US with 100 million doses for almost $2 billion.

Pfizer and BioNTech last week initiated a Phase 2b/3 safety and efficacy trial of their vaccine candidate and said that they remain on track to seek regulatory review as early as October. At the same time, the two companies reiterated that they continue to scale up manufacturing capacities to be able to produce up to 100 million doses in 2020 and about 1.3 billion doses by the end of 2021.

The BNT162 program is based on BioNTech’s proprietary mRNA technology and supported by Pfizer’s global vaccine development and manufacturing capabilities. The vaccine development program is evaluating at least four experimental vaccine candidates, each of which represents a unique combination of messenger RNA (mRNA) format and target antigen. 

Two of the companies’ four investigational vaccine candidates – BNT162b1 and BNT162b2 – received Fast Track designation from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This designation was granted based on preliminary data from Phase 1/2 studies that are currently ongoing in the US and Germany as well as animal immunogenicity studies.

Meanwhile, Pfizer shares have in recent months recouped almost all of this year’s earlier losses and are now trading down 1.8% year-to-date. Looking ahead, the $41.92 average analyst price target implies almost 10% upside potential for the drugmaker’s shares in the coming 12 months. (See Pfizer stock analysis on TipRanks).

What’s more, Mizuho Securities analyst Vamil Divan expects shares to continue their recent strength in the near-term following 2Q results. Divan reiterated a Buy rating on the stock with a $38 price target.

 “The 2Q 2020 results, along with news that the company has started its Phase 2/3 trial for its COVID-19 vaccine should allow for further upside in Pfizer shares,” Divan wrote in a note to investors. “

Overall Wall Street analysts have a cautiously optimistic outlook on the stock. The Moderate Buy consensus is based on 6 Buy ratings versus 8 Hold ratings.

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