Master Alliance Provisions Guide (MAPGuide)

Gates Foundation – CureVac, Global Access Commitments Agreement

  • Equitable Access | Access plans & principles

Definitions

Access Countries” means the countries (each an “Access Country”) on the World Bank list of low-income and lower middle-income economies (http://www.worldbank.org/data/countryclass/classgroups.htm [external link]) on the Effective Date, which are set forth on Appendix 2. If after the Effective Date a country which was an Access Country on the Effective Date (i) is removed from such list and (ii) if such country becomes part of the European Union or is subject to another treaty with other non-Access Countries which leads to a material increase of the risk of parallel imports, the Parties will cooperate in good faith to reasonably reduce the risk of parallel imports and if it is not possible to reduce the risk to a degree that is acceptable to both Parties, such country will be removed from the list of Access Countries for purposes of this Agreement.

Access Country Doses” means vaccines and drugs the Company has developed using funds from the Foundation or Foundation-supported Entities in connection with Projects and that are intended for use in the Access Countries (including, without limitation, vaccines and drugs for use in clinical trials).

Charitability Default” means any event in which Company: (i) commits a material breach of the Global Access Commitments; (ii) fails to comply with the restrictions on the use of funds set forth in this Agreement; or (iii) fails to comply with the U.S. tax code-related obligations.

1. Charitable Purposes and Use of Funds

The Foundation is making the Foundation Investment as a “program-related investment” within the meaning of Section 4944(c) of the Code. The Foundation is committed to accelerating the development of lifesaving and low-cost vaccines and drugs to reduce the burden of disease in Access Countries in furtherance of its mission to help all people lead healthy, productive lives. The Foundation requires that the innovations, products and information developed with its funding be created and managed to ensure “Global Access” can be achieved, in particular that (i) knowledge gained using its funding be promptly and broadly disseminated and (ii) the intended products developed with its funding and owned or Controlled by the Company be made available and accessible at reasonable cost to people most in need in Access Countries. The Foundation’s primary purpose in making the Foundation Investment is to further the accomplishment of the Foundation’s charitable purposes, including securing Global Access rights to new, low-cost vaccines and drugs developed (in whole or in part) through the use of the Company’s Platform Technology and for certain selected Target Diseases and Conditions (collectively, the “Charitable Purpose”). In furtherance of the Charitable Purpose, the Foundation’s investment in the Company will secure the Global Access Commitments set forth below.

The Company agrees to use the funds from the Foundation Investment solely (a) to fund the Company’s new manufacturing facility which is planned to have the capacity to produce at least [*****] doses which inter alia can be used to manufacture vaccines and drugs in support of the Foundation’s Charitable Purpose, and which is described in Appendix 1 (“New Facility”) and/or (b) to continue development of the Company’s Platform Technology and use of the Platform Technology to advance drug and vaccine candidates in support of the Foundation’s Charitable Purpose.  […]

3. Global Access Commitments

(a) Vaccine and Drug Development Projects

(i) The Company will work together with the Foundation on all stages of vaccine and drug development and commercialization for Target Diseases and Conditions. Each Project will be documented in a definitive agreement between the Foundation or a Foundation-supported Entity which Project is chosen by the Foundation and approved by the Company (such approval not to be unreasonably withheld or delayed) for such Project and the Company and a project plan (each a “Project”), which may include work to be undertaken, responsibilities, participation by other parties, timelines and milestones, project management, contributions in-kind and funding requirements, a product development and marketing plan, product registration in the Access Countries, any additional global access commitments specific to the Project, terms for manufacturing and commercialization of Access Country Doses and the price for Access Country Doses, which must be an affordable price for sales for use in the Access Countries that the Parties agree will not exceed [*****]. The Company will permit the Foundation or a representative designated by the Foundation to reasonably inspect twice every [*****] during regular business hours and at the Foundation’s cost the Company’s books and records as well as manufacturing documentation (including but not limited to the detailed bill of materials) for the purpose of determining cost of goods sold for each Product.

(ii) The Foundation – and the Company, under the conditions set forth below – will contribute in kind or through funding to agreed-upon Projects. The specific level and allocation of funding responsibilities for a specific Project will be decided on a Project-by-Project basis as mutually agreed in good faith in writing by the Parties based on a fair allocation of the expected benefits. For the avoidance of doubt, if a Project serves solely the Foundation’s charitable purposes, the expectation of the Parties is that the Foundation will fully fund the direct costs associated with such specific Project. The Company agrees that as part of the Global Access Commitments, it will accept and work on three Projects proposed by the Foundation at a time, subject to the Foundation or a Foundation-supported Entity selected by the Foundation and approved by the Company (such approval not to be unreasonably withheld or delayed) for such Project agreeing to pay its proportionate share of the funding responsibilities associated with such Projects. If the Company is working on three Foundation (or Foundation-supported Entity) Projects, then the Company will not be required to commence work on a new Project until one of the three Projects has been completed, terminated or if the Parties agreed to put a Project on hold in accordance with the terms of such Project; provided that the Company and the Foundation can work on more than three Projects in parallel if they mutually agree to do so. A Project is deemed to be completed if, as set forth in the respective project plan, no more work is to be performed on the Project by Company or its sublicensees, contractors or other collaborators. Any Project which has been terminated or put on hold shall no longer be considered an active Project for purposes of this Agreement. For the avoidance of doubt, there is no limitation on the number of Projects the Foundation can request the Company to perform (subject to the requirement that the Company is not required to work on more than three Projects at a time); provided that the Company is not obligated to accept an additional Project if the start of the proposed Project is scheduled to be after the expiry of the Project Commencement Period, but if a Project is commenced prior to the end of the Project Commencement Period, the Company will continue such Project to completion, even if this occurs after the end of the Project Commencement Period, provided, however, that the Foundation has no right to request to increase the scope of work after the end of the Project Commencement Period without the Company’s consent.

(iii) Unless provided otherwise in a specific Project Agreement (as defined below), the Parties agree that any results, information, invention, patent right and other intellectual property right and any know how generated by or on behalf of the Company with respect to the Platform Technology and/or the Funded Developments shall be owned by the Company and the Company shall be responsible, in its sole discretion, to file, prosecute, maintain and defend such intellectual property rights. 

(iv) The Company further agrees that it will not reject any Projects proposed by the Foundation unless the Company can demonstrate that accepting such Project would be reasonably likely to have a material adverse effect on the Company (“Good Reason”). By way of example, the Company agrees that it will not constitute Good Reason for the Company to reject a Project because the Company could make a higher profit by performing other work, but the Company will not be required to accept a Project on terms that would cause the Company to operate at a loss without any offsetting benefit.

(b) Access to Project Data and Information. Subject to Existing Agreements, the Company will [*****] to:

(i) Publish the results and information developed in connection with each Project within a reasonable period of time after such information or results are obtained in a manner that satisfies the requirement that such research be published in a form that is “available to the interested public” as described in Treasury Regulation 1.501(c)(3)-1(d)(5)(iii)(c)(2), which could include publication in a treatise, thesis, trade publication or a scientific journal, the presentation of a paper at a research conference or symposium and electronic publication, with due regard to delays or limitations on content of such publications that are necessary or useful (i) to protect the Company’s intellectual property, trade secrets and confidential information covering, inter alia, the Platform Technology itself and/or (ii) to allow the Company to obtain any intellectual property rights based on the results and information developed in connection with each Project.

(ii) Promptly provide to the Foundation from time to time, upon the Foundation’s request and with the agreement of the relevant Foundation-supported Entity (as appropriate), access to data and information regarding each Project, subject to the conclusion of a confidential disclosure agreement among the Foundation, the Company and, as necessary and appropriate and only upon the Company’s prior written consent (not to be unreasonably withheld or delayed) the relevant Foundation-supported Entity.

(iii) Promptly provide to the Foundation from time to time, upon the Foundation’s request, rights to share data and information developed in connection with each Project, with due regard to the need to protect confidential information and to avoid untimely public disclosures that may bar access to patent protection or public disclosures that may undermine trade secret protection.

(c) Manufacture of Access Country Doses. The Company agrees to manufacture Access Country Doses in an amount based on a rolling forecast provided by the Foundation to the Company of expected demand for Access Country Doses up to a maximum of [*****] of its New Facility Total Manufacturing Capacity (or the reasonable equivalent thereof in the event the New Facility is combined with or replaced by other manufacturing facilities, including, without limitation, as a result of a Change in Control). For such purpose, the Foundation will provide the Company with at least [*****] prior notice before it is required to begin manufacturing Access Country Doses. Unless and until such notice has been given by the Foundation, the Company will have the right to allocate 100% of its New Facility Total Manufacturing Capacity at the Company’s discretion. For the avoidance of doubt, the Company will not be required to manufacture vaccines and drugs that have been developed by third parties (other than Foundation-supported Entities participating in any Project as provided above) unrelated to the Company using funds received from the Foundation.

(d) Non-exclusive License. Subject to the Existing Agreements, in connection with and relating solely to each Project the Company will grant the Foundation a worldwide, non-exclusive, perpetual, irrevocable, fully-paid up, royalty-free license to the Funded Developments and the background intellectual property Controlled by the Company that is covering the Platform Technology to the extent reasonably required to use, research, develop, make, sell, and offer-for-sale the Funded Developments for the specific Project, including the Products developed under such Project (the “Global Access License”), but any development, manufacture, sale, offer-for-sale, importation or distribution of products is limited to importation into and distribution to people in Access Countries in a manner consistent with the Foundation’s charitable purpose; provided that the Global Access License will only come into force (condition precedent) in the event of the Company’s insolvency, dissolution or an uncured Charitability Default (Section 8(a) shall apply accordingly). The Global Access License is sublicensable to (i) Foundation-supported Entities, (ii) to CROs and CMOs acting on behalf of the Foundation or the Foundation-supported Entities or (iii) to third party licensees of the Company who have entered into a collaboration and license or asset transfer agreement with the Company With respect to a pathogen covered under a Project, provided, however, that if such third party licensee refuses to enter into a sublicense agreement with the Foundation in spite of a good faith approach of the Foundation to conclude such sublicense agreement, the Foundation may grant a sublicense to any other third party. Any agreement to be concluded in the future under the Existing Agreements will have to respect and cannot limit or restrict the Global Access Commitments.

(i) The Company agrees to take such further actions, including technology transfer, as would be typical industry practice at the time for a company providing a license to a third party, to ensure that the Foundation (or its potential permitted sub-licensee) can effectively take advantage of the Global Access License if a triggering event occurs. Without limiting the foregoing, in connection with any Global Access License hereunder, the Company will take any actions reasonably necessary to grant the Foundation a license or sub-license to any third-party intellectual property applicable to the Platform Technology or the Funded Developments that is necessary to enable the Foundation to effectively take advantage of the Global Access License for the selected Projects.

(ii) Subject to the Existing Agreements, the Company shall permit the Foundation (or its sublicensees) the right to access and cross-reference any applicable IND, BLA or regulatory file Controlled by Company and relating to any Projects and shall, upon request, provide an electronic copy of each such file.

(e) The Global Access Commitments will be ongoing and will continue for as long as the Foundation continues to pursue its charitable mission except that the Company’s obligation to accept additional Projects (in lieu of abandoned Projects) will terminate upon expiry of the Project Commencement Period. 

(f) The Company will provide to the Foundation the reports regarding program-related investments and such other reports as may be agreed upon between the Company and the Foundation and reasonable audit rights regarding the Company’s Compliance with the use of the Foundation’s funds and the Global Access Commitments.

(g) Except for rights granted in the Existing Agreements as of the Effective Date, the Company will not grant to a third party any rights or enter into any arrangements or agreements that would limit or restrict the Foundation’s rights related to the Global Access Commitments, including the Foundation’s right during the Project Commencement Period to enter into Projects with the Company with respect to any Target Diseases and Conditions. For the avoidance of doubt, nothing in this Agreement prohibits the Company from entering into an agreement with a third party with respect to the development, manufacture and commercialization of a product for a Target Disease and Condition provided that such agreement does not limit or restrict the Company’s ability to fulfill the Global Access Commitments, and the Foundation’s consent will not be required for such an agreement. In order to confirm that CureVac’s agreements with third parties relating to any Target Disease and Condition do not limit or restrict the Foundation’s rights, CureVac agrees that it will include language substantially similar to the following in such agreements:

The Company and [third party] acknowledge that the Company and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (the “Foundation”) have entered into a Global Access Commitments Agreement (the “Global Access Agreement”) pursuant to which the Company has agreed to work together with the Foundation on vaccine and drug development for certain Target Diseases and Conditions pursuant to the terms of the Global Access Agreement and any subsequent agreements entered into by the Company with respect to a particular project (each, a “Project Agreement”). The Company and [third party]agree that this [third party agreement] shall be subject to the terms of the Global Access Agreement and in no way shall this [third party agreement] limit or restrict the Foundation’s rights or the Company’s obligations pursuant to the Global Access Agreement or any existing Project Agreement. The Company and [third party] agree that the Foundation is a third party beneficiary of this provision and will have the right to enforce this provision in order to protect the Foundation’s Rights pursuant to the Global Access Agreement and any applicable Project Agreements. For the avoidance of doubt,unless otherwise agreed with the [third party], the Foundation has no claims to the results generated and to the intellectual property rights and know how Controlled by [third party]; provided that nothing in this [third party agreement] will limit or restrict the Global Access Commitments.

In the event the Company collaborates with a third party with respect to any Target Disease and Condition that becomes the subject matter of a Project hereunder, the Foundation and the Company will negotiate in good faith with such third party to attempt to combine the development efforts and align the respective project plans; provided that if the Foundation and the third party cannot reach agreement, the Foundation and the Company can proceed with such Project in accordance with the terms of this Agreement and the applicable Project Agreement.

(h) The Company and BMGF will mutually use reasonable and diligent efforts to execute and cause [*****] to execute an amendment substantially in the form attached hereto as Appendix 5, to the Option Agreement dated as of [*****] by and between the Company and [*****] as soon as reasonably possible. 

7. Survival of Rights

As a condition of any acquisition of the Platform Technology or the Company’s manufacturing facilities directly, or through a Change in Control, the Global Access Commitments described above will survive and be assumed by the acquirer to the extent required to carry out the Global Access Commitments, and the Foundation shall have the right to review such provisions of the written agreement with such third party that relate to the assumption of the Global Access Commitments to confirm that the Global Access Commitments will survive and be assumed by the acquirer to the extent required to carry out the Global Access Commitments, and the Company will not grant to a third-party any rights to, or enter into any arrangements with respect to, the Platform Technology or its manufacturing facilities to the extent such rights or arrangements would prevent the Company (or any acquirer of the Platform Technology or manufacturing facilities) from fulfilling the above stated Global Access Commitments.

In order to confirm the Global Access Commitments will survive and be assumed by the acquirer, the Company will add language substantially similar to the following to its acquisition agreements with third parties:

The Company and [third party] acknowledge that the Company and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (the “Foundation”) have entered into a Global Access Commitments Agreement (the “Global Access Agreement”) pursuant to which the Company has agreed to certain Global Access Commitments pursuant to the terms of the Global Access Agreement and subsequent agreements entered into by the Company with respect to particular projects (each, a “Project Agreement”)

[Third party] agrees that the Global Access Agreement will continue in full force and effect following consummation of the transactions contemplated by this [acquisition agreement] and [third party] will ensure performance of the terms of the Global Access Agreement and that in no way shall this [third party agreement] limit or restrict the Foundation’s rights or the Company’s obligations pursuant to the Global Access Agreement or any existing Project Agreement. The Company and [third party] agree that the Foundation is a third party beneficiary of this [third party agreement] with respect to the Global Access Commitments and will have the right to enforce this provision in order to protect the Foundation’s rights pursuant to the Global Access Agreement and any applicable Project Agreements.