Close menu

July 18th, 2022 | 15:04 CEST

Fall is coming: BioNTech, Defence Therapeutics, CureVac, Valneva - Which biotech stock will surge again?

  • Biotechnology
  • Covid19
Photo credits:

The summer of rising incidences is making its way, but the public has already shelved the pandemic measures and hospitals are filling up again. Even if no one wants to talk about it anymore, the fourth wave is coming! Worldwide, the race for suitable vaccines or treatment methods continues. Medicine is still relatively helpless as far as treating severe cases is concerned, and the subject of post-COVID is considered completely unexplored. We take another critical look at the landscape of biotech stocks.

time to read: 5 minutes | Author: André Will-Laudien
ISIN: BIONTECH SE SPON. ADRS 1 | US09075V1026 , DEFENCE THERAPEUTICS INC | CA24463V1013 , CUREVAC N.V. O.N. | NL0015436031 , VALNEVA SE EO -_15 | FR0004056851

Table of contents:

    BioNTech - Some arrows in the quiver, but CureVac complains

    BioNTech generated more than EUR 10 billion in net profit in fiscal 2021 after a shortfall of about EUR 180 million in the pre-Corona year 2019. The money, which flowed mainly from vaccination, is now expected to flow into further research at the Mainz-based Company. In order to grow further, BioNTech CEO Ugur Sahin does not rule out individual acquisitions. It has already been clear since the last capital market conference that in the long term, this will not only be about fighting COVID-19. Fighting cancer with mRNA technology has always been the goal of Sahin and his wife, Özlem Türeci. HEXAL founders Thomas and Andreas Strüngmann stood guard over their idea and still hold a 43% stake today.

    The Corona vaccination was virtually the baptism of fire for a new technology, which is now complemented by new, innovative product developments. Around 20 research projects are in clinical phases I or II, plus 12 preclinical research programs. The Company recently received a promising drug status from the European Medicines Agency (EMA) for CAR-T cell therapy for testicular cancer. Sahin has clearly stated that BioNTech would also like to celebrate successes with mRNA away from Corona in the future. Currently, the Mainz-based company is working on corresponding active substances for multiple solid tumors. The topic is also being taken up by other pharmaceutical giants. The French company Sanofi, for example, plans to invest EUR 400 million annually in mRNA vaccines and has recently made further purchases in this area.

    Meanwhile, BioNTech is facing a patent infringement lawsuit from its competitor CureVac. The courts should be pleased, but it remains to be seen who will ultimately be proven right. CureVac failed with its vaccine development, and such lawsuits are common in the industry. That shouldn't save the stock, which is down 90% from its all-time high. BioNTech shares peaked at around USD 464 last August, and since then, the stock has lost nearly 75% of its value at its peak. However, a re-entry into the standard stock should be worthwhile given the current low valuation, as the P/E ratio for 2023 is only a low 9, and the book value still adds up to EUR 112. Buy in weakness!

    Defence Therapeutics - Full steam ahead against cancer

    The Canadian biotech specialist Defence Therapeutics (DTC) has developed the AccumTM platform, a patented technology that offers great hope in current cancer research. As a publicly traded research company, it is working to enable the precise transport of antigens or ADCs in the intact form to target cells using AccumTM.

    The Company has now provided an update on its ongoing ADC programs with global collaborators. One of these is the world-renowned Curie Institute, which is currently conducting a therapeutic efficacy study of the AccumTM-T-DM1 antibody-drug conjugate ("ADC") in a patient-derived xenograft ("PDX") breast cancer model. It will be followed immediately by a head-to-head comparative study of the toxicological and pharmacokinetic profile of T-DM1 versus AccumTM T-DM1 in mice. Results are expected in the third or fourth quarter of this year. T-DM1 (Kadcyla) is currently used to treat women with metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer. The ongoing study aims to demonstrate that the current therapy can be optimized using Defence's AccumTM technology to improve the delivery of the drug to tumour cells.

    Defence is also continuing its collaboration with the HUS Comprehensive Cancer Center in Finland. Collaboration is intensified with the Institut de Recherche en Cancérologie de Montpellier (IRCM), which is currently conducting in vivo studies using AccumTM with radioimmunotherapeutic conjugates. Defence is also collaborating with WASSC Technologies, a biotech company specializing in protein conjugation, molecules and ADCs, to develop a new small molecule for ADC application.

    "Defence's AccumTM platform was developed primarily to improve intranuclear drug delivery for several US Food and Drug Administration-approved or novel antibody conjugates. We strongly believe that all major test results expected this year regarding AccumTM ADCs will continue to demonstrate the efficacy of our technology and take Defence Therapeutics to a new level," said CEO Sebastien Plouffe. The share is currently trading at EUR 1.38, down from just under EUR 4 at the beginning of the year. The value is highly interesting but equally speculative.

    Valneva - Too late - the short hype is already over again

    The French-Austrian vaccine manufacturer Valneva develops, produces and markets vaccines against infectious diseases. With its VLA-2001 dead vaccine, Valneva has a vaccine against the coronavirus that currently has formal approval in the EU, conditional approval in the UK, and emergency approvals in the Kingdom of Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates. The Company is still struggling to sell its only dead vaccine, as the hoped-for anchor order from the EU Commission in Brussels never materialized due to delays in approval.

    The deeper reason may have to do with the currently prevalent Omicron variants, as the Company's website clarifies that the research data relates to the time before the Omicron variant appeared. Accordingly, Valneva has also received marketing approval for VLA-2001 only "for use as a primary vaccine in people aged 18 to 50 years in Europe," according to the statement. The Company itself believes that VLA-2001 is also suitable for booster vaccination. Studies are currently being conducted to determine whether this is the case, with initial results expected in the third quarter of 2022.

    After a rapid doubling from EUR 7.50 to over EUR 15, the Valneva share has now returned to EUR 10.20, with a current market capitalization of EUR 1.17 billion. At the end of the first quarter, there was still more than EUR 300 million in cash, which should be enough for a few more study series. The Company's large pipeline is also attractive. But time is running out, as the next Corona wave for the fall is already underway. The share is very volatile and speculative!

    The biotech sector has seen a real sell-off in 2022. Crashes of over 70% were the rule rather than the exception. Which stocks can now take off in the fall depends on many factors. Unfortunately, fundraising is now occurring at lower levels and diluting existing shareholders. BioNTech and Moderna are the clear top dogs, and Defence Therapeutics could take off again in the fall with continued success stories.

    Conflict of interest

    Pursuant to §85 of the German Securities Trading Act (WpHG), we point out that Apaton Finance GmbH as well as partners, authors or employees of Apaton Finance GmbH (hereinafter referred to as "Relevant Persons") currently hold or hold shares or other financial instruments of the aforementioned companies and speculate on their price developments. In this respect, they intend to sell or acquire shares or other financial instruments of the companies (hereinafter each referred to as a "Transaction"). Transactions may thereby influence the respective price of the shares or other financial instruments of the Company.
    In this respect, there is a concrete conflict of interest in the reporting on the companies.

    In addition, Apaton Finance GmbH is active in the context of the preparation and publication of the reporting in paid contractual relationships.
    For this reason, there is also a concrete conflict of interest.
    The above information on existing conflicts of interest applies to all types and forms of publication used by Apaton Finance GmbH for publications on companies.

    Risk notice

    Apaton Finance GmbH offers editors, agencies and companies the opportunity to publish commentaries, interviews, summaries, news and the like on These contents are exclusively for the information of the readers and do not represent any call to action or recommendations, neither explicitly nor implicitly they are to be understood as an assurance of possible price developments. The contents do not replace individual expert investment advice and do not constitute an offer to sell the discussed share(s) or other financial instruments, nor an invitation to buy or sell such.

    The content is expressly not a financial analysis, but a journalistic or advertising text. Readers or users who make investment decisions or carry out transactions on the basis of the information provided here do so entirely at their own risk. No contractual relationship is established between Apaton Finance GmbH and its readers or the users of its offers, as our information only refers to the company and not to the investment decision of the reader or user.

    The acquisition of financial instruments involves high risks, which can lead to the total loss of the invested capital. The information published by Apaton Finance GmbH and its authors is based on careful research. Nevertheless, no liability is assumed for financial losses or a content-related guarantee for the topicality, correctness, appropriateness and completeness of the content provided here. Please also note our Terms of use.

    Der Autor

    André Will-Laudien

    Born in Munich, he first studied economics and graduated in business administration at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University in 1995. As he was involved with the stock market at a very early stage, he now has more than 30 years of experience in the capital markets.

    About the author

    Related comments:

    Commented by Nico Popp on September 27th, 2023 | 07:10 CEST

    Rich as a Sheikh? Here is what's happening: Schott Pharma, BioNTech, Cardiol Therapeutics

    • Biotechnology
    • Pharma

    High-tech or add-on? When Schott Pharma's shares go public in Frankfurt on Thursday, investors are likely to have a clear opinion. The manufacturer of pharmaceutical packaging may be attracting significant interest precisely because its business model is clearly defined. But what sets Schott apart, and which companies in the pharmaceutical and biotech industry might also become interesting? We provide insights and deliver answers!


    Commented by Juliane Zielonka on September 22nd, 2023 | 06:50 CEST

    Cardiol Therapeutics, BioNTech, BYD - At top speed to new markets

    • Biotechnology
    • Pharma
    • Electromobility

    Cardiol Therapeutics is enjoying a remarkable development. The biotech company is now rolling out its ARCHER patient recruitment trial internationally at 35 participating centers. This accelerates research in the development of their therapy to combat myocarditis, a heart inflammation which has been associated with COVID-19 vaccination. For Cardiol Therapeutics, this represents an opportunity to get its therapy approved as an orphan drug. Approval is also at stake for BioNTech. With a multimillion-dollar funding boost, the Company is working on accelerated approval for a vaccine against a virus that caused quite a stir last year. The shortened development time is likely to impress investors. While business nations agree on fighting viruses, they disagree on commodities for the road. The EU would prefer to restrict BYD's successful sales on domestic roads - by imposing tariffs. BYD, meanwhile, is tapping into a completely different market.


    Commented by André Will-Laudien on September 18th, 2023 | 06:30 CEST

    Unbelievable! Hands off AI, biotech in rebound! Bayer, Defence Therapeutics, Morphosys

    • AI
    • Biotechnology
    • Investments

    The big fall decline is now over. It is always a difficult time, but the so-called "Triple Witching" went relatively smoothly this time. The European Central Bank (ECB), in its first interest rate meeting after the summer break, decided to raise key rates by another quarter point to 4.00%, up from the previous 3.75% in July. At the same time, it lowered its inflation forecast for 2025 and the outlook for economic growth in the Eurozone for the years 2023 to 2025. Economic risks are increasing, but inflation remains the determining factor for interest rates. Expectations that the US Federal Reserve (FED) will announce an interest rate pause at its next meeting on Wednesday have boosted confidence. Last week's big losers were the recently favoured AI stocks Nvidia, Microsoft and However, the biotech sector has recently started to climb again. Where are the opportunities for investors?