Pfizer expects to sell $36 billion of COVID vaccine this year
Pfizer has increased sales expectations for its COVID-19 vaccine, which is its most popular product, and its early view of 2022 is also well above Wall Street forecasts.
Tuesday’s statement by the drugmaker stated that it expects to earn $36 billion from its coronavirus vaccine in this year. That’s about 7 percent higher than what Pfizer forecast in July and more than twice what the company expected at the start of the year, shortly after distribution of the two-shot vaccine began.
Next year, Pfizer says global vaccine sales could total around $29 billion or more, and there’s room for growth. Pfizer expects to be able to recognize revenue from 1.7 billion doses by 2022, but it could also produce 4 billion.
“We continue to believe the vaccine has durability, and there will continue to be significant revenue beyond 2022,” chief financial officer Frank D’Amelio told analysts.
FactSet reports that analysts project $24 billion in vaccine sales each year. They expect that revenue from shots will start to decline in the next few years depending on how the pandemic plays.
But for now, Comirnaty — which is the trade name of the vaccine, which Pfizer developed with Germany’s BioNTech, has gained a dominating market share in the US and Europe. It is also experiencing growth in emerging countries.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 248,000,000 doses of Comirnaty were administered in the US. That compares to 159 million and 15 million doses of vaccines from rivals Moderna and Johnson & Johnson, respectively.
Pfizer records the vast majority of revenue from Comirnaty, splits profit, and costs to make and distribute the vaccine with BioNTech. The US drugmaker saw $13 billion in sales in the third quarter from shots, even though its revenue fell in its home country.
Analysts predicted that this would happen as demand dropped following the rush to get shots after the expansion of vaccine eligibility in the spring. However, demand is picking up again, and will be helped in part by booster shots and an expansion for the vaccine for children.
Late last week, the Food and Drug Administration cleared kid-size doses of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine — just a third of the amount given to teens and adults — for emergency use. The vaccines could be available to children as soon as this week.
Pfizer’s vaccine is the first cleared by the FDA for use in children. Pfizer chairman and CEO Albert Bourla said that the US government had already purchased 115 million doses of the vaccine for children. This is enough to vaccinate every American child.
Pfizer products also include other vaccines, cancer treatments, and internal medicine drugs, such as Eliquis, to prevent blood clots or strokes.
The company is also working on an oral COVID-19 vaccine that could be used as a preventive measure or treatment for patients who have been affected by the virus.
Pfizer executives stated Tuesday that the potential treatment is showing signs of being effective against multiple variants of the virus. They are optimistic while waiting for research data later in the year.
“It’s a really important drug for the world … fingers crossed as we look forward to the readout,” said Pfizer’s chief scientific officer, Mikael Dolsten, MD.
Pfizer’s third quarter earnings totaled $8.15 trillion. Adjusted results were $1.34 per sytem. The company’s revenue more than doubled to $24.09 billion compared to last year’s quarter.
Analysts were expecting third-quarter earnings of $1.08 a share from Pfizer based on $22.58 billion in revenue.
Pfizer raised its 2021 forecast Tuesday. Pfizer now anticipates 2021 adjusted earnings between $4.13 and $4.18 per share based on revenue of $81 billion to $92 billion.
Analysts project earnings of $4.04 a share for $78.77 billion of revenue.
As overall markets rose slightly, shares of Pfizer Inc., New York-based, jumped nearly 5% in midday trading to $45.72.