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UPDATE 3-Vaccine manufacturing deals power Emergent BioSolutions profit beat

(Adds details from post earnings call)

Feb 18 (Reuters) - Emergent BioSolutions Inc beat fourth-quarter profit expectations on Thursday, benefiting from manufacturing deals to help produce COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics.

The company has entered into more than seven manufacturing collaborations, including with AstraZeneca Plc, Johnson & Johnson, Novavax, Vaxart Inc, Humanigen Inc, since the outbreak of the pandemic.

The company said it has set up a large-scale manufacturing infrastructure, which will help it produce and supply drug substance for the vaccine candidates on time.

“We’re right online with doing that, timing-wise, as well as capability for both Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca Plc,” Chief Executive Robert Kramer said on a conference call with analysts.

“Specific to J&J, their short-term goal is to provide as many as 100 million doses to the U.S. government in the first half of 2021. And we’re right on schedule to support that.”

Revenue from the company’s contract development and manufacturing (CDMO) unit rose to $199.1 million in the quarter from $25.5 million a year ago.

“Expect our CDMO business to continue to be a significant contributor to our future growth and expansion,” Kramer said.

Excluding items, Emergent earned $3.67 per share in the quarter ended Dec. 31, ahead of the analysts’ average estimate of $3.19.

Shares of the Gaithersburg, Maryland-based company were up 1.52% in extended trading. (Reporting by Mrinalika Roy in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber and Arun Koyyur)

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