COVID vaccine maker AstraZeneca says 2021 revenue dives

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— AFP/File

LONDON: British COVID vaccine maker AstraZeneca stated Thursday that internet revenue collapsed final yr, hit by the huge takeover of US biotech agency Alexion and different costs, regardless of surging revenues.

Revenue after tax slumped to simply $112 million (98 million euros) in contrast with $3.2 billion in 2020, the pharmaceutical firm stated in an announcement.

Nonetheless, revenues together with COVID-19 vaccine gross sales rebounded 41% to $37.four billion.

The COVID jab, Vaxzevria, achieved full-year gross sales of virtually $four billion.

Nonetheless, the group warned Thursday of declining coronavirus product gross sales this yr because the lethal pandemic recedes.

Sturdy development 

“AstraZeneca continued on its robust development trajectory in 2021,” stated chief government Pascal Soriot, noting robust progress on new medicines alongside the acquisition and integration of Alexion.

“We additionally delivered on our promise of broad and equitable entry to our COVID-19 vaccine with 2.5 billion doses launched for provide world wide, and we made good progress on lowering our greenhouse gasoline emissions.”

The UK group confronted huge prices final yr following its $39-billion takeover of US biotech firm Alexion, whereas it additionally took giant impairment and restructuring costs.

AstraZeneca, which developed its COVID jab with Oxford College, initially supplied the vaccine at price in the course of the pandemic in distinction to rivals together with Pfizer, however indicated in November that it might begin promoting it at a revenue.

Soriot added that the group was growing its shareholder dividend after what he described as a “landmark yr”.

The annual dividend was upped to $2.90 per share.

AstraZeneca added that it anticipates that COVID product gross sales will sink by “a low-to-mid twenties share” this yr.

That’s anticipated to be partially offset by gross sales of Evusheld, its preventative moniclonal antibody therapy for immunocompromised individuals.

But AstraZeneca warned that the gross revenue margin from its COVID-19 medicines was anticipated to be “decrease than the corporate common”.

The group additionally revealed Thursday that it had swung right into a pre-tax annual lack of $265 million, after a $3.9-billion revenue final time round.

In response to the outcomes, AstraZeneca’s share value rallied 3.5% to eight,655 pence in early morning commerce on London’s rising inventory market.

Jab ‘raised profile’ 

“The COVID vaccine has raised Astra’s world profile considerably, with its earlier not-for-profit standing now being eliminated,” stated Hargreaves Lansdown analyst Keith Bowman.

“For now, and with additional innovation and new drug successes ongoing, analyst consensus opinion continues to level to a robust purchase.”

Rival drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline had reported Wednesday that 2021 earnings had slumped by 1 / 4, after the prior yr was boosted by asset gross sales.

GSK has to date failed to provide a profitable COVID vaccine not like AstraZeneca, however is creating a jab alongside French peer Sanofi.

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