Valneva, IDT Biologika end COVID vaccine deal as demand slides

French biotech Valneva and German drug manufacturer IDT Biologika have called it quits on their collaboration as the COVID-19 pandemic wanes and as current stockpiles of vaccines in the EU remain robust.

The original deal between the two companies called for IDT Biologika to produce inactivated COVID-19 bulk vaccine at its facility in Germany for Valneva. Earlier this year, however, the European Commission slashed its order, and Valneva suspended manufacturing.

As part of the termination, Valneva will pay IDT Biologika as much as 36.2 million euros ($36.1 million) in cash and another 4.5 million euros ($4.49 million) in the form of specified equipment purchased by Valneva, the company said.

In late July, Valneva shares tumbled more than 15% following Europe's move to drastically cut the company’s contract to produce millions of COVID-19 doses. The EU had previously agreed to buy 60 million doses over a two-year period, but European officials trimmed that number to just 1.25 million doses.

“Valneva has started to deliver doses of VLA2001 to the European member states who ordered the vaccine and is retaining inventory for potential additional supply (to member states) should demand increase,” Valneva said in a statement Friday.

Valneva remains in discussions with “various other governments” to deploy between 8 million and 10 million doses of remaining inventory into international markets in the next 6 to 12 months, the company added.