Pfizer CEO: Our Covid-19 Vaccine Could Be Ready For Americans By Year-End

Pfizer’s (PFE) vaccine candidate BNT162b2 could be available to Americans by the end of the year if the ongoing trials show that it is safe and effective, reports CNBC.

Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla said during an interview on CBS’ “Face the Nation” that key data from Pfizer’s late-stage trial will be ready to submit to the US regulatory body, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), by the end of October.

 And if the application is approved, then Pfizer is prepared to distribute “hundreds of thousands of doses.”

He revealed that the company has already invested $1.5 billion for the development of the potential vaccine. Asked about what will happen if the vaccine does not work, Bourla replied: “At the end of the day, it’s only money. But that will not break the company, although it’s going to be painful.” 

On September 12, Pfizer and its partner BioNTech (BNTX) stated that they have submitted an amended protocol to the FDA to expand the enrollment in their late-stage Phase 3 Covid-19 vaccine trial to up to 44,000 participants from the initial target of 30,000.

The two companies believe that the proposed expansion would “further increase trial population diversity, and include adolescents as young as 16 years of age and people with chronic, stable HIV (human immunodeficiency viruses), Hepatitis C, or Hepatitis B infection, as well as provide additional safety and efficacy data.”

On September 8, Mizuho Securities Vamil Divan reiterated his Buy rating for Pfizer stock with a $43 price target. He is impressed with the progress Pfizer has made with its Covid-19 vaccine to date and includes risk-adjusted sales of ~$1.7Bn in 2021 and ~$1.2Bn in 2022 in his model, which he says could prove conservative.

“However, after the initial bolus we assume a steady rate of annual sales in the $500M-$600M range from 2024 on, limiting the impact we believe the vaccine can have on helping Pfizer navigate the time period beyond 2025 when the company will be facing a number of important patent expirations” the analyst told investors.

Nonetheless, Divan takes a bullish outlook on Pfizer, and its ‘underappreciated’ pipeline. Speaking about Pfizer’s upcoming Investor Day, Divan said “Pfizer is evolving into a pure-play innovative biopharma company and, as such, can use this opportunity to showcase a company with a more productive R&D engine that can support the company as it approaches multiple large patent expirations.” (See PFE stock analysis on TipRanks)

The Street has a cautiously optimistic Moderate Buy consensus for Pfizer based on 5 Buys and 6 Holds. Pfizer stock has declined about 8% so far this year, which means that the average analyst price target of $43.13 implies 20% upside potential.  

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