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Sanofi backs vaccines unit with €350m Canadian facility

The new plant will make paediatric and booster vaccines

Sanofi Pasteur

Sanofi has announced one of its largest-ever investments in a single manufacturing facility, putting €350m behind a new vaccine plant in Toronto, Canada.

The move underlines the importance of the Sanofi Pasteur vaccines business to Sanofi even as it suffers a slowdown in growth caused in part by the label change to dengue fever vaccine Dengvaxia last year, as well as lumpy orders for its meningitis vaccine Menactra and overall static sales of paediatric combination shots.

The new Toronto plant will focus on making paediatric and booster vaccines that have been growing at a healthy lick, particularly in Europe and China, despite being pegged back of late by the timing of tenders in emerging markets.

It will produce the five-component acellular pertussis (5-acP) antigen used in Sanofi’s Daptacel diphtheria, tetanus and acellular pertussis (DTaP) product, as well as recently-launched Quadracel which also includes inactivated poliovirus (IPV) and Pentacel which adds IPV and Haemophilus influenzae type b antigens.

Once completed in 2021, the new facility will also be equipped to produce diphtheria and tetanus antigens, said Sanofi.

“This project is one of the most important investments for the Sanofi global industrial network,” said Sanofi’s head of global industrial affairs Philippe Luscan. “It demonstrates our continued commitment to manufacturing excellence and to better serving our vaccines portfolio to people all over the world.”

Sanofi’s vaccines sales grew 8.3% overall last year, but growth shrank to 1.2% in the fourth-quarter, after the roll-out of Dengvaxia was affected by a scandal in the Philippines that resulted in an expensive refunding exercise. The controversy was caused by data showing that vaccination in patients previously unexposed to the dengue virus could cause an elevated risk of a severe form of the disease.

Last year’s performance was driven by Sanofi’s paediatric and influenza vaccines, and the pharma company has also been investing in the latter category. Last year, it said it would invest €170m in a project to expand a manufacturing facility in Val de Reuil, France, in order to boost production of four-strain flu vaccine VaxigripTetra, which was approved in Europe in 2016. That facility is also scheduled to come online in 2021.

Article by
Phil Taylor

13th April 2018

From: Sales

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