AstraZeneca’s profits grow, but not thanks to the Covid-19 vaccine

AstraZeneca has released financial results for the first quarter of the year. We learned that the Covid vaccine only accounts for 4% of its turnover.

Vaccine, goose laying golden eggs in laboratories? Not really if you believe the results of the Swedish-British pharmaceutical group AstraZeneca for the first quarter of the year, released on Friday.

Admittedly, its net income doubled year on year from $ 750 million in 2020 to $ 1.56 billion in early 2021 on a 21% net margin. This is better than in previous years, where it was 5% in 2019 and 10% in 2018.

The vaccine accounts for 4% of sales.

But these good results are not related to the Covid-19 vaccine. Of the $ 7.32 billion in sales in the first quarter of 2021, the vaccine only brought in $ 275 million, or 3.7 percent. And this despite the fact that the vaccination campaign around the world is accelerating. At the end of 2020, the vaccine brought AstraZeneca just $ 2 million.

In fact, the laboratory derives most of its income from cancer treatment, one of its specialties. The sector saw a 20 percent jump in sales and the lab received $ 3 billion, or 41% of its turnover.

The AstraZeneca vaccine is one of the cheapest on the market and the group says it sells it at cost, which explains the low income from this serum. Pfizer, whose dose is much more expensive, estimates that sales of its Covid vaccine will reach $ 15 billion in 2021.

In addition to the financial results, there is also the question of the damaged image of the laboratory. AstraZeneca is really in disarray. His vaccine is delayed in delivery to Europe, which is why the European Union is suing it, accusing the laboratory of default. The union is even considering refusing to extend the supply contract. In addition, the vaccine raises doubts about its side effects, which has forced some countries, such as Denmark, to stop using it.

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