Here’s why Novavax stock fell again on Tuesday morning

By: Wajeeh Khan
Wajeeh Khan
Wajeeh is an active follower of world affairs, technology, an avid reader, and loves to play table tennis in his free… read more.
on May 11, 2021
  • Novavax delayed ramping up Coronavirus vaccine production again.
  • The company is unlikely to seek regulatory approval until Q3 of 2021.
  • The U.S. firm reported significant growth in its first-quarter revenue.

Novavax Inc (NASDAQ: NVAX) delayed ramping up COVID-19 vaccine production again on Monday and said it was unlikely to seek regulatory approval for its shot in Europe, UK, and the United States until Q3 of 2021. Shares of the company slid about 7% in premarket trading on Tuesday.

Following the announcement, Novavax was reported about 10% down in after-hours trading on Monday, despite reporting significant growth in its first-quarter revenue. On a per-share basis, the Maryland-based company’s loss came in narrower than what analysts had anticipated.

CEO expresses confidence that manufacturing hurdles have been removed

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The biotech firm now wants to ramp up COVID-19 vaccine production to 150 million doses per month by Q4 of 2021 – a target that it had originally set for the third quarter. Novavax had previously expected U.S. regulatory approval to arrive in May.

Commenting on Q1 results on Monday, CEO Stanley Erck expressed confidence that Novavax has now removed major manufacturing hurdles. Commercial-scale production of its COVID-19 shot can now begin at all of the company’s facilities.

Erck also highlighted that up to 40 million doses of the Coronavirus vaccine are currently on the shelves, with factories producing more every week. While demand in the U.S. is declining, Novavax chief commercial officer John Trizzino said:

“Unmet demand outside of the United States has resulted in continued demand for Novavax’s vaccine.”

Novavax to supply 1.1 billion vaccine doses to COVAX

Novavax has committed to supply 1.1 billion doses to the international vaccine sharing program, COVAX. On top of that, it has also pledged 200 million shots to several countries, including India. The vaccine’s late-stage trial in the United Kingdom showed promising results against the original and the more contagious variant of the Coronavirus, which was first reported in Britain.

Official approval for Novavax shot in any country, however, is yet to arrive. Results of its trial in the U.S. and Mexico are expected in the ongoing quarter. In the prior quarter (Q4), Novavax had noted £127.55 million of loss.

Novavax opened at £94.77 per share in the stock market on Tuesday and is currently exchanging hands at £100.81 per share. In comparison, it had started the year 2021 at £79.91 per share after recovering from a low of £57.08 per share in the last week of October 2020.

At the time of writing, the Nasdaq-listed company has a market capitalisation of £7.10 billion.

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