Full access to Entrepreneur for $5
Subscribe

AstraZeneca Lost Money on COVID-19 Vaccine in First Half of 2021

AstraZeneca said losses on Vaxzevria were the main factor that shaved seven percentage points off its Reported Gross Profit Margin, which fell to 73.5 percent in the first half of the year.

By
This story originally appeared on The Epoch Times

AstraZeneca, which pledged to provide its COVID-19 vaccine at no profit for the duration of the pandemic, said Thursday that losses in the first half of the year on its vaccine shaved 4 cents off the pharmaceutical giant’s earnings per share.

Sales of Vaxzevria, the company’s COVID-19 vaccine, generated $1.17 billion in revenue during the first six months of the year, including $894 million in the second quarter, according to AstraZeneca’s earnings report, released on July 29.

But while these revenues narrowed AstraZeneca’s hit from offering the COVID-19 vaccine at no profit, the company said losses on Vaxzevria were the main factor that shaved seven percentage points off its Reported Gross Profit Margin, which fell to 73.5 percent in the first half of the year.

“The performance predominantly reflected the significant impact of the equitable supply, at no profit to AstraZeneca, of the pandemic COVID-19 vaccine, together with an increasing impact from profit-sharing arrangements,” AstraZeneca said in the report.

AstraZeneca said losses on Vaxzevria shaved three cents off earnings per share in the first quarter, and one cent in the second quarter. According to a Wall Street Journal analysis, AstraZeneca lost $40 million on its COVID-19 vaccine in the first quarter, and $13 million in the second quarter.

The company reported a net profit in the second quarter of $550 million, missing the Factset consensus forecast of $1.19 billion. AstraZeneca’s net profit in the second quarter of 2020 came in at $756 million.

At the same time, net profit in the first half of 2021 came in at $2.1 billion, 42 percent higher than $1.5 billion in the first half of last year.

“AstraZeneca has delivered another period of strong growth thanks to robust performances across all regions and disease areas,” said AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot, in a statement commenting on the results.

On Thursday, AstraZeneca said it intends to seek U.S. approval for its COVID-19 vaccine later this year. The Anglo-Swedish drugmaker said the application has been delayed because the company decided to ask the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for full regulatory approval, rather than the fast-track emergency use authorization.

Among the concerns AstraZeneca will have to address are reports that the vaccine may be linked to rare blood clots, which have caused some countries to limit its use in younger people.

AstraZeneca has promoted its relatively cheap, easy-to-handle shot as a “vaccine for the world” and has already received authorization from more than 170 countries. The company said it provided about 90 percent of the doses distributed by the COVAX facility for low- and middle-income countries in the first half of the year.

AstraZeneca is the second drugmaker to say it has delivered more than 1 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccine globally, following Pfizer’s announcement on Wednesday.

By Tom Ozimek

 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Follow Tom on Twitter: @OZImekTOM
The Epoch Times

Written By

The Epoch Times is the fastest-growing independent news media in America. We are nonpartisan and dedicated to truthful reporting.

We are free from the influence of any government, corporation, or political party—this is what makes us different from other media organizations. Our goal is to bring our readers accurate information so they can form their own opinions about the most significant topics of our time.

We don’t follow the unhealthy trend of agenda-driven journalism prevalent in today’s media environment. Instead, we use our principles of Truth and Tradition as our guiding light. We highlight in our reporting the best of humanity, the valuable lessons of history, and traditions that are beneficial for society.

The Epoch Times was founded in the United States in the year 2000 in response to communist repression and censorship in China. Our founders, Chinese-Americans who themselves had fled communism, sought to create an independent media to bring the world uncensored and truthful information.

The Epoch Times has received numerous awards for our reporting and design, including from the New York Press Association, the Society of Professional Journalists, and the Society for News Design.

The Epoch Times’ media network currently covers 21 languages and 33 countries.