Wockhardt looks to roll out 2 vaccines from UK plant in 12 months as part of tie-up with Serum

PTI, Feb 26, 2023, 5:44 PM IST

Drug firm Wockhardt plans to roll out two vaccines within a year from its UK-based facility as part of a tie-up with Serum Institute of India, a top company official said.

Last year, a Wockhardt unit tied up with a subsidiary of Serum Institute of India to set up a vaccine manufacturing facility in Wrexham, North Wales (UK).

”Serum has identified two vaccines and we plan to manufacture these products within the next 12 months after exhibit batches and regulatory approval is received,” Wockhardt Managing Director and Global CEO Murtaza Khorakiwala said in an analyst call.

Elaborating on the tie-up, he noted that the company has already concluded an agreement with Serum and as a result of that Wockhardt has received 10 million pounds as a contribution for reserving the manufacturing facility for 150 million doses per year of vaccine for 15 years.

”This is 150 million doses per year for about a 15-year agreement. And in addition to a contract manufacturing, there is a joint venture component in the agreement, where there is a profit share of 51:49 in favour of Wockhardt,” Khorakiwala said.

Elaborating on the company’s antibiotic product pipeline, he noted that five products were currently in the development phase. ”A new report by CDC in the US hospitals concluded that the resistance to infection on which 5222 (under development product) works has increased somewhere between 30-80 per cent because of two years of COVID-19. This further enhances the potential and makes 5222 even more relevant as a lifesaving medicine,” Khorakiwala said.

The global phase three trial of the product which commenced in August 2022 is progressing well and the drug firm intends to complete this trial over the next 15 to 18 months and seek approval in markets globally in the US, Europe, China & India and be in the markets sometime in 2025, he added.

Khorakiwala said the product (5222) already has saved three lives of patients in India, even before it is approved and undergoing phase three trials.

On the US business, he noted that the company has shut down its manufacturing facility at Morton Grove near Chicago. ”Using a simple 80-20 formula, we have identified the product portfolio to be manufactured by a third party and that will be an ongoing continuing business that we will have,” Khorakiwala said.

As a result of the entire restructuring of the manufacturing, the company intends to save about USD 12 million in losses which it is currently incurring, he added.

Wockhardt’s consolidated revenue from operations stood at Rs 699 crore in the third quarter ended December 31, 2022.

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