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Moderna vs Pfizer: Who's In The Best Position To Deliver The Vaccine?

Back in September, we published a piece on vaccine skills at the top pharmaceutical companies, titled “Why Are Vaccines Taking Longer Than They Should?” Based on the share of scientists with skills in vaccines, we saw that Pfizer was far ahead and most likely to make advancements. Given the recent news that both Pfizer and Moderna have developed a vaccine, we decided to reevaluate both companies to see which would be most successful at distributing a vaccine?

Revelio Labs

12/1/20

Back in September, we published a piece on vaccine skills at the top pharmaceutical companies, titled “Why Are Vaccines Taking Longer Than They Should?” Based on the share of scientists with skills in vaccines, we saw that Pfizer was far ahead and most likely to make advancements. Given the recent news that both Pfizer and Moderna have developed a vaccine, we decided to reevaluate both companies to see which would be most successful at distributing a vaccine?

Below are the share of employees in relevant positions:

plot

While Moderna has a greater share of scientists, Pfizer has a much greater share of its workforce in distribution, which explains why Moderna was able to compete with Pfizer in development of a vaccine but may struggle with the second phase of this race.

Moderna, however, has been rapidly hiring in distribution-related roles over the course of the pandemic. Moderna has been ramping up sales & marketing resources since March, but has seen a massive spike in logistics workers since August. Pfizer, meanwhile, has kept a consistent hiring rate throughout this time:

plot

Takeaways:

  • Although having only a fraction of the resources of Pfizer, nearly 38% of Moderna’s workforce are scientists, which may have allowed it to punch above its weight class in discovering a vaccine.
  • It appears that Moderna has accelerated logistics hiring in August, perhaps revealing an internal confidence that their vaccine would successfully complete clinical trials.
  • It is interesting to note that Pfizer doesn’t appear to have changed its hiring for positions in logistics or sales & marketing over these last few months.

If you have any ideas of other metrics to track or would like to hear more, please feel free to reach out.

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