COVID-19 expansions drive confidence at Maravai

Maravai highlighted Pfizer and BioNTech’s expansions as indicators that demand for its mRNA capping solution will continue to grow.

Millie Nelson, Editor

May 11, 2021

2 Min Read
COVID-19 expansions drive confidence at Maravai
Image/iStock: Ildo Frazao

Maravai LifeSciences highlighted expansions at customers Pfizer and BioNTech as indicators that demand for mRNA capping solutions will continue to grow.

Maravai attained its messenger RNA (mRNA) capping solution, called CleanCap, through the acquisition of contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) TriLink BioTechnologies in 2016.

In its first quarter 2021, the firm reported $91 million in CleanCap revenue, an increase of 76% when compared to Q4 2020.


Image/iStock: Ildo Frazao

Going forward the firm “expect continued strong demand from our existing COVID-19 CleanCap customers in 2021 and 2022 as they dramatically increase their manufacturing capacity for existing vaccines,” Carl Hull chairman and CEO of Maravai told shareholders during its Q1 2021 financial earnings call.

The firm has an ongoing contract with Pfizer and BioNTech to provide CleanCap technology for their mRNA COVID-19 vaccine, BNT162b2, which received emergency use approval in December 2020.

To date, 450 million doses of the vaccine have been shipped to 91 countries and both firms have committed to increase their mRNA capacity to meet global demand.

Pfizer said in April it will invest in its manufacturing network to support continued global demand and produce 3 billion doses of the COVID jab in 2021, which is up 20% from its initial 2021 prediction.

In an open letter chairman and CEO of Pfizer, Albert Bourla said its internal aim is to reach 4 billion doses during 2022.

Furthermore, BioNTech reported this week it will boost its mRNA capacity by building a facility in Singapore, which could produce hundreds of millions of doses of vaccines annually and be fully operational in 2023.

The firm has also agreed terms for a 50/50 Joint Venture (JV) with Fosun Pharma to manufacture its COVID-19 vaccine in mainland China, which according to Maravai will include a manufacturing facility “capable of producing one billion doses of the COVID-19 vaccine each year.”

Maravai discussed the aforementioned expansions as providing a “great deal of confidence in the growing demand for CleanCap [it] will see this year, next year and beyond from [its] largest customers.”

Hull added: “The multiple concurrent tailwinds now cause us to believe that 2022 is likely to see mRNA COVID-19 vaccine capacity among our customers expand well beyond what was originally expected in 2021.”

About the Author(s)

Millie Nelson

Editor, BioProcess Insider

Journalist covering global biopharmaceutical manufacturing and processing news and host of the Voices of Biotech podcast.

I am currently living and working in London but I grew up in Lincolnshire (UK) and studied in Newcastle (UK).

Got a story? Feel free to email me at [email protected]

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