The FDA has granted emergency use approval to Novavax Inc’s NVX-CoV2601 COVID-19 Vaccine, Adjuvanted (2023-2024 Formula), for individuals aged 12 and older. This timely authorization comes as there is growing optimism in the market regarding COVID-19 vaccine demand.
According to B. Riley, the pace of COVID-19 hospitalizations and emergency room visits has recently stabilized after a surge in late August. This positive trend, coupled with a broader understanding among the general population about the importance of protecting vulnerable individuals, is expected to drive wider adoption of vaccines.
What sets Novavax’s vaccine apart is that it is a non-mRNA protein-based alternative, offering a reliable option that is on par with the mRNA vaccines. This is the first time a non-mRNA vaccine has achieved this level of acceptance, which was not the case in previous vaccine campaigns.
Market research conducted by Novavax indicates that 30% of participants prefer a non-mRNA vaccine, highlighting the potential demand for their product. Additionally, Novavax has secured a contracted price of $72.5 per dose with the CDC, ensuring access to free boosters for uninsured individuals through the end of 2024.
While the list price for Novavax’s vaccine is $130 per dose, insurance and pharmacy-level rebates and discounts will likely bring down the actual cost. Under the Affordable Care Act, insurance plans are required to cover ACIP-recommended vaccines without cost-sharing, further facilitating access and affordability.
In terms of sales projections, Novavax expects to generate approximately $260 million in Q4 from the U.S. market. This estimate is based on selling at least 350,000 units, assuming ten doses per carton. However, it is worth noting that mRNA sponsors have imposed restrictions, limiting Novavax to 200 doses per order.
Despite the positive news, NVAX shares have experienced a 6% decline, currently trading at $7.21.