Jab maker’s profits soar on the back of COVID-19 vaccine rollout
Pfizer has reported its earnings and sales more than doubled in the past quarter, and it has raised its outlook for results the full year, thanks greatly to its COVID-19 vaccine.
The company reported adjusted earnings of US$7.7 billion ($10.3 billion), up 133 per cent from a year earlier. Revenue soared to US$24.1 billion ($32.3 billion), up 134 per cent. Both easily cleared results forecast by analysts.
The vaccine business alone was responsible for more than 60 per cent of the company’s sales, as vaccine revenue rose to US$14.6 billion ($19.6 billion) from only US$1.7 billion ($2.3 billion) a year earlier.
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The company said its COVID-19 vaccine sales accounted for US$13 billion ($17.4 billion) of that revenue. Revenue outside of its COVID-19 vaccine business was up a far more modest 7 per cent.
The company said it expected full-year revenue of between US$81 billion to US$82 billion ($108.6-$110 billion) up US$2 billion ($2.7 billion) from its earlier guidance.
It also raised its earnings per share outlook by about 3 per cent to 5 per cent above what it had been expected to earn.
“While we are proud of our financial performance, we are even more proud of what these financial results represent in terms of the positive impact we are having on human lives around the world,” said CEO Albert Bourla in his prepared remarks for investors.
The US Food and Drug Administration on Friday granted emergency use authorisation for the COVID-19 vaccine from Pfizer for children ages 5 to 11.
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Final approval of the vaccine for children is up to the director of the Centres for Disease Control, Dr Rochelle Walensky.
The CDC’s vaccine advisory committee was set to meet on Tuesday, and the younger children could start to get the vaccine within days.
Pfizer says a clinical trial showed its vaccine provides more than 90 per cent protection against symptomatic disease among children, even at one-third the dose that could be administered to children.
It said another trial shows that booster doses of the vaccine for adults showed 95.6 per cent efficacy. Older and at-risk adults have already been getting the booster doses in many countries since earlier this year.
Pfizer disclosed last week that the US government had exercised its final purchase option to buy 50 million additional doses of its COVID-19 vaccine.
That brings the total number of pediatric doses of the vaccine to 115 million, which is enough to vaccinate every US child.
Overall, the US government has now purchased a total of 600 million doses across all age ranges under its supply agreement.
Shares of Pfizer were up 3 per cent in pre-market trading on the results.