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9 New ‘Vaccine Billionaires’ Amass Combined Net Worth of $19.3 Billion During Pandemic

A new report by People’s Vaccine Alliance reveals how Big Pharma’s monopoly on COVID vaccines generated a massive increase in wealth for a handful of people.

A new report shows the global push to develop a vaccine for COVID-19 has spawned nine new “vaccine billionaires” who have amassed a combined net wealth of $19.3 billion.

The author of the report, People’s Vaccine Alliance, said the pharmaceutical industry’s monopoly on COVID vaccines has generated a massive increase in wealth for a handful of people.

In addition to the nine new “vaccine billionaires,” the coalition of health and humanitarian organizations, world leaders and economists said “eight existing billionaires — who have extensive portfolios in the COVID-19 vaccine pharma corporations — have seen their combined wealth increase by $32.2 billion.”

Anna Marriott, health policy manager at Oxfam, a member of the People’s Vaccine Alliance, said:

“These billionaires are the human face of the huge profits many pharmaceutical corporations are making from the monopoly they hold on these vaccines. These vaccines were funded by public money and should be first and foremost a global public good, not a private profit opportunity.”

The coalition’s list of new vaccine billionaires includes four tycoons who profited off U.S. vaccine maker Moderna, the CEO of BioNTechand three co-founders of the Chinese vaccine company, CanSino Biologics.

The nine billionaires, in order of their net worth are:

  1. Stéphane Bancel, CEO of Moderna, now worth $4.3 billion.
  2. Ugur Sahin, CEO and co-founder of BioNTech, now worth $4 billion.
  3. Timothy Springer, immunologist and founding investor of Moderna, now worth $2.2 billion.
  4. Noubar Afeyan, Moderna’s chairman, now worth $1.9 billion.
  5. Juan Lopez-Belmonte, chairman of spanish drugmaker Rovi, which struck a deal to make ingredients for Moderna’s vaccine, now worth $1.8 billion.
  6. Robert Langer, scientist and founding investor in Moderna, worth $1.6 billion.
  7. Zhu Tao, co-founder and chief scientific officer at CanSino Biologics, worth $1.3 billion.
  8. Qiu Dongxu, co-founder and senior vice president at CanSino Biologics, now worth $1.2 billion.
  9. Mao Huihua, co-founder and senior vice president at CanSino Biologics, now worth $1 billion.