UK – GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) sold over US$1.5 billion worth of its recently launched respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) vaccine, Arexvy, in 2023, demonstrating robust market adoption and outperforming the company’s initial projections.

According to the British Biopharmaceutical’s recent report, the impressive performance had surpassed its initial forecast range of 900,000 to 1 billion pounds (US$1.2 billion). 

Arexvy’s impressive performance together with the continued adoption of GSK’s shingles vaccine, Shingrix also contributed to a substantial 24% growth in GSK’s  vaccine business in Q4 2023 compared to the previous year

Arexvy made history in May when it received approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use in adults aged 60 or older, marking the first preventive vaccine for RSV.

 Pfizer quickly followed suit, gaining approval for its RSV shot, Abrysvo, a few weeks later. However, GSK’s Arexvy has demonstrated a more robust market performance, with Pfizer reporting Abrysvo sales of US$515 million for the entirety of 2023.

GSK proudly declares that it has secured approximately two-thirds of the U.S. market share, where nearly all Arexvy sales were recorded. 

The vaccine is widely available in major retail pharmacies, and GSK reports that around 6 million out of roughly 83 million U.S. adults aged 60 or older have received Arexvy.

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Luke Miels, GSK’s Chief Commercial Officer, expressed confidence in the vaccine’s potential, stating, “We remain very confident this vaccine can achieve more than £3 billion in peak year sales over time,” during an earnings call on Wednesday.

Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), a leading cause of respiratory illness, has swiftly become a significant market with the introduction of Arexvy and Abrysvo. Moderna is poised to join the competition with its own RSV vaccine for older adults, expecting regulatory approval in the first half of 2024.

For Pfizer and Moderna, success in the RSV market is viewed as a crucial move to counteract the decline in sales from reduced demand for their COVID-19 shots.

GSK aims to further strengthen its market dominance and is seeking expanded approval for Arexvy in adults aged 50 to 59 in the U.S., Europe, and Japan.

Closing the fiscal year with 30.3 billion pounds in sales in 2023, GSK projects growth between 5% and 7% in the current year. 

Additionally, the company upgraded its long-term outlook, anticipating sales growth of higher than 7% through 2026, signaling a positive trajectory for GSK’s strategic initiatives and the continued success of Arexvy in the competitive vaccine landscape.

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