Healthcare Business

GlaxoSmithKline Joins the Race for a COVID-19 Vaccine

GlaxoSmithKline PLC (NYSE: GSK) is joining the race for a COVID-19 vaccine with its newest acquisition, but it may be tough to catch Pfizer and BioNTech after their most recent results. GlaxoSmithKline announced that it is acquiring a 10% stake in the German biopharma firm CureVac.

The 10% stake is part of CureVac and GlaxoSmithKline’s collaboration for the research, development, manufacturing and commercialization of up to five mRNA-based vaccines and monoclonal antibodies targeting infectious disease pathogens.

Under the terms of the deal, GlaxoSmithKline will make an equity investment in CureVac of €150 million, representing close to a 10% stake, an upfront cash payment of €120 million.

The company also will make a one-time reimbursable payment of €30 million for manufacturing capacity reservation, upon certification of CureVac’s commercial-scale manufacturing facility currently under construction in Germany.

The companies will combine their mRNA expertise on development opportunities across a range of infectious disease pathogens, selected with the potential to best leverage the advantages of this platform technology, while addressing significant unmet medical need and economic burden.

CureVac’s existing COVID-19 mRNA and rabies vaccines research programs are not included in the collaboration announced today.

CureVac will be eligible to receive development and regulatory milestone payments of up to €320 million, commercial milestone payments of up to €380 million and tiered royalties on product sales.

GlaxoSmithKline stock traded at $41.65 on Monday, in a 52-week range of $31.43 to $48.25. The consensus price target is $47.70.

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