Covid-19 Pressures Rival Vaccine Producers to Being Friendly Enemies

Mish

Big pharmaceutical companies have set aside rivalries to help make competitor’s shots.

Unusual Alliances 

The desperate need for Covid-19 vaccines has had an interesting side effect: Fierce Industry Competitors Are Now Pandemic Friends.

The production alliances are the latest example of industry rivals coming together to fight the pandemic, starting with research tie-ups.

“This is a time when the pharma companies are saying, ‘We’ll go back to fighting when this is over. We’ll take you to the cleaners and maybe drive you to bankruptcy, but right now we need to be working together,’” said James Bruno, who consults for drug companies.

Friendly Enemies

  • Sanofi SA (SNY) recently agreed to help make a vaccine from Pfizer Inc. (PFE) and its partner BioNTech SE (BNTX) after Sanofi’s experimental Covid-19 shot suffered a five-month setback, freeing up a production line in Frankfurt.
  • Novartis AG (NVS) agreed to help Pfizer and BioNTech produce more doses.
  • Baxter International Inc. (BAX) and Endo International (ENDP) have agreed to help Novavax Inc. (NVAX) produce its shot. to fight the pandemic, starting with research tie-ups.
  • Pfizer, which has cancer drugs that compete with products from Sanofi and Novartis, and BioNTech brought on partners to help nearly double its 2021 production target to 2 billion doses.
  •  AstraZeneca (AZN) which has a vaccine authorized in the U.K. and several other countries, and Moderna (MRNA) have signed deals with contractors to make their shots.

Hooray! 

These unusual alliances are a fantastic deal for science, consumers, and the companies involved. 

Companies should try this win-win-win arrangement more often. 

Gettin' Together is Better Than Ever

Readers might be wondering if I have an appropriate musical tribute. Indeed I do.

Thank You Tommy James and the Shondells. 

Not Just Companies

It's not just companies. The UK and EU ought to try something similar and the same applies to the US, EU, and Iran. 

Opportunities for better cooperation are endless!

Mish

Comments (18)
No. 1-11
Eddie_T
Eddie_T

Too much of our system now has seemingly turned into a zero sum game, where there is always a winner and a loser in every transaction. I’m all for a little win/win.

KidHorn
KidHorn

I agree it's a good thing, but I question whether or not this is purely altruistic. I assume the companies are being paid for their efforts and what better way to learn what your competitors are doing than make their products for them?

Doug78
Doug78

It's good that Covid pushed companies to cooperate on producing and distributing the Covid vaccines. Who can be against that? That it portends a general trend towards cooperation more than competition within the Pharma Industry is far from being true. This could be a one-off event. The focus in my opinion is on the superiority of the US and UK systems whose companies, governments and financial markets are able to rapidly garner resources to produce vaccine results in an incredibly short time. Compare that to the problems the European Union had experienced and you see a big difference.

Quanta
Quanta

Mish, UK and EU used to cooperate, but the UK conservatives sold the idea to the gullible right-wing masses that nannycrats in Brussels will prevent UK children from playing with party balloons, and that Brussels will control everything in your home. All for political benefit and nothing else. Those same people who voted for Brexit cannot name ONE thing that EU was preventing them from doing. Fear of immigration was the primal fear. Other than that , UK just lost open markets and minimal border control with one of the largest trading partners, right across the Channel.
Brexit was the same conservative demagoguery as "America First" here. You wanna truly make America First, make sure the children are educated well, that businesses have sensible regulation not over-regulation, that there is infrastructure and R&D investment and health care is taken care of.
U.S. is leaving it's young children behind , instead focusing on the needs of the corporations and older stockholders. Old generation should not be a focus of investment.

2 Replies

FromBrussels
FromBrussels

LOL ! NONSENSE! The UK is far better off without the parasitic EU circus, asylum for mostly failed, sidelined wortless national politicians in a last yet fruitfull attempt to grossly and tax freely line their pockets while looking forward to golden handshakes and impressive pensions....THAT is ALL what the EU about ! Btw in the UK 20% of the population has been vaccinated ....while in the EU ....3% ?? Very efficient EU INDEED!

Quanta
Quanta

Stop trolling. This is not about pensions of the nannycrats. This is about real people and business. Most people in Britain now realize Brexit was a terrible idea. They've lost access to single market, and didn't gain anything in return. I heard from someone that UK was paying the EU something like 10B pounds. Well guess what UK GDP is 2T pounds, and if they lost even 1% as a result of Brexit due to no longer being part of the open market, that would be 20B pounds loss. I'm betting the GDP losses due to Brexit will be much more than 1% as business will pull out of the UK in favor of EU countries.

Sechel
Sechel

Much of this could only happen if government's decided to look the other way on monopoly issues

numike
numike

Federal law prohibits employers and others from requiring vaccination with a Covid-19 Much remains unknown about the safety and efficacy of the vaccine

PecuniaNonOlet
PecuniaNonOlet

Just saw Joe Biden on CNN signing an executive order about microchips. Those vaccines + chips will be rolled out faster than ever!!!!! /s

PostCambrian
PostCambrian

There is much that could be accomplished if everything wasn't looked at as a zero sum game. Looking at the world through a zero sum lens actually makes it negative sum. When dealing with rivals, instead of shunning them or trying to hurt them, we need to go back to the "trust but verify" model.


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