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Pfizer expects $54 billion in 2022 sales on Covid vaccine and treatment pill

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Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla addresses a press conference after a visit to oversee the production of the Pfizer-BioNtech COVID-19 vaccine at the factory of U.S. pharmaceutical company Pfizer in Puurs, Belgium April 23, 2021.
John Thys | Pool | Reuters

Pfizer projects it will generate record-high revenue in 2022, saying Tuesday it expects to sell $32 billion of its Covid-19 shots and $22 billion of its antiviral coronavirus treatment pill Paxlovid this year.

However, the company posted mixed fourth-quarter results, beating on earnings but missing on revenue. Pfizer’s stock was down more than 3% in pre-market trading.

Here’s how the company performed compared to what Wall Street expected, based on analysts’ average estimates compiled by Refinitiv:

Adjusted EPS: $1.08 vs.87 cents expected
Revenue: $23.84 billion vs. $24.12 billion expected

Pfizer’s miss on revenue was driven by lackluster sales in its internal medicine and hospital segments. Fourth-quarter internal medicine sales fell 3% year-over-year to $2.24 billion, while hospital sales were largely flat at $1.88 billion compared to the same quarter in 2020. Pfizer’s oncology sales grew 7% to $3.24 billion compared with the same three months in the previous year.

However, Pfizer’s fourth-quarter revenue more than doubled overall to $23.84 billion year-over year, driven by $12.5 billion in sales of its Covid vaccine. The company’s antiviral pill that fights Covid, Paxlovid, contributed $76 million in U.S. sales during the fourth quarter. The Food and Drug Administration gave the pill emergency approval in December.

On an unadjusted basis, Pfizer’s fourth-quarter profit increased more than fourfold to $3.39 billion from $847 million during the same three months in 2020.

Pfizer expects $98 billion to $102 billion in sales for 2022, and adjusted earnings per share of $6.35 to $6.55.

Pfizer started a clinical trial late last month of a Covid vaccine that targets the omicron variant in adults ages 18 to 55. CEO Albert Bourla has said the company expects to have the vaccine ready by March.

Pfizer and its partner BioNTech are also working with the Food and Drug Administration to expedite authorization of their Covid vaccine for children under 5-years-old this month, the last age group left in the U.S. that is not eligible for immunization. The companies expect kids under 5 will ultimately need three doses, but they are working to get the first two shots FDA authorized while they finish trials on the third dose.

Pfizer is also working to ramp up production and delivery of Paxlovid. Bourla has said Pfizer expects to produce 6 million to 7 million courses in the first quarter this year and 120 million by the end of the year. The U.S. government has ordered 20 million courses, with 10 million expected by June.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

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