Swiftwater, Pa. (USA) and Lyon (France), July 20, 2007 – Sanofi pasteur, the vaccines division of the sanofi-aventis Group, announced today the completion of construction of its new influenza vaccine manufacturing facility that is expected to more than double its production capacity in the United States. The new facility will further enable sanofi pasteur to support public health and protect individuals against both seasonal and pandemic influenza.
The new $150-million, 140,000 square-foot (13,000 square-meter) vaccine manufacturing plant is designed to more than double the site’s capacity to over 100 million doses of influenza vaccine per year. The new manufacturing facility is currently projected to come on-line in late 2008 or early 2009 following the facility’s licensing by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Sanofi pasteur is the only company manufacturing inactivated influenza vaccine in the U.S.
“As the world’s largest supplier of influenza vaccines, sanofi pasteur is committed to addressing current and future public health needs by investing in a robust research and development program and an ambitious production plan for pandemic preparedness,” said David Williams, Chairman and CEO, sanofi pasteur. “The completion of this new facility incorporating the latest technology in vaccine production, illustrates the company’s priority to produce the largest number of doses of vaccine in the shortest time frame to face the threat of seasonal and pandemic influenza.”
The construction completion follows last month’s announcement from the U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt awarding sanofi pasteur a $77.4 million contract to retrofit its existing Swiftwater influenza vaccine manufacturing facility. Sanofi pasteur will contribute approximately $25 million toward the retrofit project.
Combining the capacities of new facility with the retrofitted facility should enable sanofi pasteur to triple its influenza vaccine capacity in the U.S., advancing the company’s current leadership role as the largest supplier of influenza vaccine in the U.S. and the world. Sanofi pasteur also manufactures influenza vaccine in France, where it is expanding its influenza vaccine capacity, as well.
Sanofi pasteur leads the way in pandemic preparedness with the first U.S. licensed avian influenza vaccine for humans and has successfully achieved manufacturing scale-up of this first generation vaccine using proven, licensed and existing technology.
Sanofi pasteur and Pandemic Preparedness
Sanofi pasteur is committed to global pandemic preparedness. As the world leader in research, development and manufacturing of influenza vaccine, sanofi pasteur is actively involved in projects in the U.S. and Europe, with the goal of developing a vaccine to protect against a pandemic influenza virus. For more information please visit www.sanofipasteur.com/pandemicpreparedness
Sanofi-aventis is one of the world leaders in the pharmaceutical industry, ranking number one in Europe. Backed by a world-class R&D organisation, sanofi-aventis is developing leading positions in seven major therapeutic areas: cardiovascular, thrombosis, oncology, metabolic diseases, central nervous system, internal medicine and vaccines. Sanofi-aventis is listed in Paris (EURONEXT: SAN) and in New York (NYSE: SNY).
Sanofi pasteur, the vaccines division of the sanofi-aventis Group, provided more than a billion doses of vaccine in 2006, making it possible to immunize more than 500 million people across the globe. A world leader in the vaccine industry, sanofi pasteur offers the broadest range of vaccines protecting against 20 infectious diseases. The Company's heritage, to create vaccines that protect life, dates back more than a century. Sanofi pasteur is the largest company entirely dedicated to vaccines. Every day, the company invests more than EUR1 million in research and development. For more information, please visit: www.sanofipasteur.com or www.sanofipasteur.us
Forward Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, as amended. Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts. These statements include financial projections and estimates and their underlying assumptions, statements regarding plans, objectives, intentions and expectations with respect to future events, operations, products and services, and statements regarding future performance. Forward-looking statements are generally identified by the words “expects,” “anticipates,” “believes,” “intends,” “estimates,” “plans” and similar expressions. Although sanofi-aventis’ management believes that the expectations reflected in such forward- looking statements are reasonable, investors are cautioned that forward-looking information and statements are subject to various risks and uncertainties, many of which are difficult to predict and generally beyond the control of sanofi-aventis, that could cause actual results and developments to differ materially from those expressed in, or implied or projected by, the forward-looking information and statements. These risks and uncertainties include those discussed or identified in the public filings with the SEC and the AMF made by sanofi-aventis, including those listed under “Risk Factors” and “Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward- Looking Statements” in sanofi-aventis’ annual report on Form 20-F for the year ended December 31, 2006. Other than as required by applicable law, sanofi-aventis does not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking information or statements.