Moderna expects $18.4 billion in 2021 sales from Covid vaccine, chief medical officer to depart

Moderna expects $18.4 billion in 2021 sales from Covid vaccine, chief medical officer to depart

A Moderna (COVID-19) vaccine is seen at the LA Mission homeless shelter on Skid Row, in Los Angeles, California, U.S., February 10, 2021.

Lucy Nicholson | Reuters

Moderna said Thursday it expects to generate $18.4 billion in sales from its Covid-19 vaccine this year.

In releasing its fourth-quarter earnings, Moderna also said its chief medical officer, Tal Zaks, will leave the company in late September. The company said it has retained Russell Reynolds “to recruit for a new CMO with global and commercial experience.”

Shares of Moderna were up 3.9% in premarket trading.

The news comes a day after the company said it was expecting to produce at least 700 million Covid vaccine doses this year. It also said it expects to produce up to 1.4 billion Covid vaccine doses in 2022.

Pfizer, which also has a vaccine authorized for use in the United States, said earlier this month that it expected to sell about $15 billion in doses this year.

Moderna has a deal with the federal government for 300 million doses and has shipped about 55 million doses to the U.S. It expects to complete delivery of the first 100 million doses to the U.S. by the end of the first quarter, the second 100 million doses by the end of May and the third by August.

Moderna, like other vaccine makers, has been rapidly working to meet the demand for shots that hopefully will help bring an end to the pandemic, which has infected more than 112 million people and killed at least 2.4 million, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

The company is in talks with the Food and Drug Administration on a proposal to fill its Covid vaccine vials with up to five additional doses to ease a bottleneck in manufacturing. One vial of Moderna’s two-shot vaccine contains 10 doses, enough to inoculate five people, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The company also said Thursday it is in talks with the World Health Organization-backed COVAX initiative to supply doses this year and in 2022.

Moderna’s vaccine has been authorized by the FDA for use in people who are age 18 and older. Clinical trial studies are incomplete for children, whose immune systems can respond differently than adults.

The company said Thursday it has completed enrollment of 3,000 participants in a clinical trial testing its vaccine in kids ages 12 to 17.