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Earnings Results: Pfizer expects a record $100 billion in revenue this year, thanks to COVID-19 vaccines and treatments


Pfizer Inc.

expects to bring in more than $50 billion in revenue this year from its COVID-19 vaccine and oral medication, further cementing the company’s role as the world’s go-to pharmaceutical partner in the pandemic.

The drug maker has been saying for the better part of a year that it wants to be a “pandemic partner” to governments and health systems. Now that Paxlovid, its COVID-19 pill for people who are at high risk of severe disease, has been authorized in 40 countries, including the U.S., that vision is nearing reality. 

“We are well-positioned to continue to lead the battle against this disease,” Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla told investors on Tuesday, according to a FactSet transcript of a fourth-quarter earnings call.

The company missed revenue expectations in the final quarter of the year, sending the stock down in premarket trading, though it beat on earnings.

Pfizer had $12.5 billion in sales of the COVID-19 vaccine that it developed with BioNTech SE

in the fourth quarter of 2021, for a total of $36.7 billion in sales for the year. (The Pfizer and BioNTech arrangement has a 50/50 gross profit split, with Pfizer booking the majority of global revenue for the vaccine, Comirnaty.)

Paxlovid, which received authorization from the Food and Drug Administration in mid-December, generated about $76 million in sales in the final quarter of 2021. 

That said, all signs point to a record financial year for Pfizer in 2022. The company said it expects Comirnaty revenue of $32 billion and Paxlovid revenue of $22 billion this year. This means that Pfizer expects to generate revenue of $98 billion to $102 billion this year, marking the first time in the country’s history that forecasted revenue crossed the $100 billion mark, executives said. That’s up from $83.1 billion in revenue in 2021 and way up from $41.9 billion in revenue in 2020.

Expect to see those 2022 estimates increase as the year goes on and more contracts for the COVID-19 shots and treatment are signed, according to Mizuhu Securities analyst Vamil Divan. “Pfizer remains in a strong position given the success they are experiencing with Comirnaty and Paxlovid,” he wrote, “with the key questions being the sustainability of those revenue streams and how the company leverages their ‘COVID cash’ to improve their longer-term outlook.”

Pfizer said Tuesday that it’s currently discussing Paxlovid contracts with more than 100 countries, and it expects to manufacture 120 million courses of treatment in 2022.

“As the number of authorizations increase, so will the number of contracts for this treatment, which could truly be a game changer,” Bourla said.

Pfizer’s stock has gained 47.5% so far this year, while the broader S&P 500

is up 15.3%.

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