Victoria partners with Lumos to manufacture 50 million RATs locally

Victoria partners with Lumos to manufacture 50 million RATs locally

Victorian Premier Dan Andrews has announced today the state will work alongside Lumos Diagnostics (ASX: LDX) and its delivery partner Planet Innovation to tackle the critical shortages of rapid antigen tests (RATs) across Australia.  

The partnership is subject to the company’s COVID-19 RAT CoviDx receiving approval from the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), but once approved will give the green light to establish a $17.2 million manufacturing facility in Victoria to produce a million RATs from April.

Manufacturing would ramp up to three million a month after July, with full production from October onwards of up to 50 million RATs per year.

As a result of the agreement, approximately 70 ongoing jobs will be created.

Shares in LDX have spiked on the news, up by 15 per cent to $1.075 per share at 1.13pm AEDT.

“Manufacturing rapid antigen tests in Victoria will protect and secure the state’s supply chain and create local jobs,” Victorian Premier Dan Andrews said.

“Being able to scale up production so quickly shows the strength of Victoria’s advanced manufacturing capabilities."

Lumos is already making RATs for Canadian and European markets and has established manufacturing facilities in Florida and California. The company plans to use existing supply chains to replicate its US output in Victoria.

“To these guys and their staff, we’re very grateful for your skill for your expertise. This is a very valuable commodity - perhaps never been more valuable,” said the Premier.

In FY21, Lumos reported a $25 million in annual revenue, representing a 198 per cent increase year-on-year (8.4 million).

EBITDA also increased by 36.6 per cent, reaching $16.4 million compared to $12 million in FY20.

Lumos Diagnostics executive chairman Sam Lanyon has confirmed CoviDx has been submitted to the TGA for approval.  

“We’ve got an active application - that's where we're at right now. We're feeling quietly confident. Our products have [been] approved in other regions,” Lanyon said.

“We expect to have an approval imminently.”

Victoria recorded 14,533 new cases of COVID-19 today. Of those, 768 are in hospital.

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