Poland’s Mabion SA expects to start commercial production of Novavax Inc.’s coronavirus vaccine quickly after it completes test trials around mid 2021 in what could be the start of multiyear cooperation between the companies.
“There is lack of vaccine production facilities globally and our key assets are bio-reactors with free capacity,” Pietruszkiewicz told Bloomberg. “Rising export limits for vaccines should be even supportive for our plans as it may help convince Novavax to have manufacturing locations in Europe.”
Mabion shares surged as much as 18% on Friday after the Polish biotechnology company said it received its first payment from Novavax. The stock closed 7.6% higher than on Thursday, extending its year-to-date advance to 318% on bets it will benefit from sky high demand for Covid shots. The company is now worth 1.19 billion zloty ($303 million.)
The conditional contract with Novavax became a game-changer for Mabion, which has for years been working on a cancer drug similar to Roche Holding AG’s rituximab. Apart from the Polish deal, Novavax has facilities in the Czech Republic and a partnership in Spain within the European Union.
Mabion won’t disclose the potential scale of the final contract for commercial deliveries with Novavax as details are being negotiated. The deal will be signed if test series made around mid-year are promising, he said.
Vaccine contracts may become a longer-term cooperation for Mabion and Novavax as jabs need to be updated in future years against fresh variants of the virus, according to Pietruszkiewicz.