The Strategist

Moderna shareholders demand justification for high cost of COVID-19 vaccine

12/27/2021 - 09:21

Moderna shareholders demanded that the company explain the high cost of its COVID-19 vaccine and disclose its production technology to companies in non-wealthy countries, the FT learned. Moderna challenged the shareholders' request to the SEC.

Governor Tom Wolf
Governor Tom Wolf
Moderna, the maker of a COVID-19 vaccine, is facing shareholder demands to justify the high cost of the drug, the Financial Times wrote.

According to the newspaper, Legal & General Investment Management (LGIM), a London-based asset management company, is acting on behalf of shareholders. It believes Moderna shareholders have a right to know how US funding of the vaccine affects the drug's pricing and availability. Moderna has received at least $2.5bn from the US government, while supplying the vaccine mainly to wealthy countries and not sharing its production technology with businesses in low- or middle-income countries, LGIM's position was reported by the Financial Times.

Moderna has challenged the shareholder request with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). This is a common procedure for companies disagreeing with shareholder demands and it is not uncommon for organisations to win these disputes, the FT noted. In a document posted on the SEC's website, Moderna said it plans to release additional pricing information on its website no later than February 15. Moderna did not respond to a request from the Financial Times.

Meanwhile, Oxfam, an international organisation working to address global poverty, along with other investors, petitioned Moderna and another producer of the coronavirus vaccine Pfizer for more technology sharing, the FT claimed. For Moderna, both investor petitions were the first the company has received since going public in 2018, the newspaper wrote.