The measure also affects Austria, Valneva said. How many jobs will be cut in Austria remained open. There are 250 jobs in Austria, but Austria is less affected than the other two Covid production sites in Scotland and Sweden.
The downsizing in Austria will take place partly through layoffs and partly through natural departures by the end of 2023, “in parallel with the termination of our COVID-19 activities, in particular the completion of the ongoing clinical studies,” the company said. A social plan is also planned. According to the company announcement, in addition to the Vienna BioCenter, the production facilities in Scotland and Sweden are particularly affected, as these three locations were most involved in the production of the COVID vaccine. Despite the current staff reduction, the company will have 25 percent more jobs after the restructuring than before the start of COVID-19 vaccine development.
Inactivated vaccine approved at the end of June
Valneva’s inactivated vaccine against Covid-19 was approved in the EU at the end of June. A few weeks later, however, the European Commission shrunk the supply contract from initially 60 to 1.25 million doses, partly because of delays in the approval process and lower demand for vaccines, which was caused by an oversupply of vaccines in the EU. Valneva has since halted production. Whether a second attempt will be made is open.
The company, which is based in southern France, announced on Thursday that the announced downsizing of the business areas could result in annual savings of around twelve million euros. According to the company’s website, Valneva has more than 750 employees in six countries.
Revenues more than tripled
Valneva produces and sells vaccines against infectious diseases, including the inactivated vaccine against Corona. “The downsizing of our business operations will enable us to increase efficiency and focus on achieving our operational and strategic business goals,” said CEO Thomas Lingelbach, explaining the job cuts at the loss-making company.
In the first nine months, Valneva more than tripled its revenues to EUR 249.9 (previous year: 69.8) million. The bottom line is that the loss fell to 99.1 million euros after a minus of 227.6 million euros. Planned R&D spending has now been reduced to between EUR 95 million and EUR 110 million from the previously expected range of between EUR 120 million and EUR 135 million. Valneva justified this with the gradual reduction in clinical trial spending and the accelerated phase-out of activities related to the Covid vaccine.
For the year as a whole, the group confirmed its sales target of EUR 340 to 360 million. The forecast is based on the fact that a sustained recovery in travel vaccines can be expected, the group said. In addition, further payments in connection with the delivery of the inactivated vaccine against Corona are to be expected.
Valneva once had high hopes for the inactivated corona vaccine, but its approval in the EU had been delayed several times. The company also struggled to get its vaccine onto the market to compete with rival products from manufacturers like AstraZeneca, Moderna and Biontech/Pfizer.