Biovac is a proudly South African company established in 2003 as a Public Private Partnership to revive strategically-significant vaccine development and manufacturing capability in South Africa. The on-going shortage of vaccine and biological manufacturing capability on the continent drives our determination and vision to become a centre of excellence firmly rooted in Africa.
Biovac imports, exports, packages, tests and distributes vaccines. We ensure the supply of vaccines required for the children’s vaccination program, known as the Expanded Program on Immunisation, in South Africa. We coordinate supply and demand with offshore suppliers, the Department of Health and other customers to ensure that the required vaccines get to where they are needed in the 9 provinces of South Africa and some of our neighbouring countries. Over 25 million doses of vaccines are delivered each year via a cold and supply chain infrastructure to ensure that the quality of the vaccines at the point of use is guaranteed.
Biovac has made significant progress in re-establishing manufacturing capability. To date, over R500 million has been invested in infrastructure and skills development at Biovac. World-class manufacturing infrastructure (upstream processing, downstream processing, formulation, filling, inspection, labelling and packaging), Quality Control laboratories and warehouses with significant cold-storage capacity have been built.
Our strength lies in our ability to partner with others. We have partnered with research organisations (e.g. University of Cape Town, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research – CSIR), international organisations (e.g. World Health Organization – WHO, Program for Applied Technologies in Health – PATH), industry (e.g. Sanofi Pasteur of France, bioCSL of Australia, Heber Biotec of Cuba, BioFarma of Indonesia, Pfizer of USA) and funding organisations (e.g. the Industrial Development Corporation). Through these partnerships, we have set up the infrastructure described above and are in-sourcing technologies. Biovac has developed its own vaccine manufacturing technologies and out-licensed these to international partners.
Currently, we employ over 180 staff, 60% of whom have a bachelor’s degree or higher qualification. Appropriately skilled and qualified staff are recruited, retained and developed through intensive training programs locally and abroad, the latter with manufacturing partners and international training institutions.