HONG KONG-listed Sino Biopharmaceutical, controlled by Charoen Pokphan Group, is investing $515 million (15.4 billion baht) in Sinovak Life Sciences, a company that produces coronavirus vaccine under the brand “Coronavak,” Sanook.com quoted Japanese Nikkei news agency as saying today (Jan. 5).
This investment will give Sino Biopharmaceutical a 15% stake in the Chinese firm which has its operations in Beijing.
Aside from the CP member company, the Chinese fund Advantech Capital and Vivo Capital from the US offered loans to Sinovak Life Sciences in exchange for shares, at 7.5% and 6.3% stake respectively.
The new investments comes at a time Sinovak is moving to double its production to 600 million doses of its vaccine and is gearing up to open its second production plant.
Sino Biopharmaceutical said its investment in Sinovak is meant to speed up the production of the vaccine for the masses with another goal being to demonstrate corporate social responsibility to fight the pandemic and to expand its business from medicine to disease prevention.
The Thai Cabinet today (Jan. 5) approved the urgent acquisition of 2 million doses of the Chinese vaccine.
Thailand will receive the Chinese vaccine in three batches, with the first 200,000 doses arriving in February, 800,000 in March, and another 1 million in April, according to the Public Health Ministry. Thailand has also started local production of vaccines developed by AstraZeneca Plc under a technology transfer agreement, which is expected to be ready for distribution in May, according to a Bloomberg report published by Hindustan Times.
Top: A doctor or a nurse filling a syringe with a Covid-19 vaccine. Photo: Marco Verch professional photographer (CC BY 2.0)