Master Alliance Provisions Guide (MAPGuide)

CureVac – GSK, COVID-19 Vaccine Collaboration and License Agreement

  • Business model | Governance

7. Governance

7.1 Management

7.1.1 Alliance Management. Management of the collaborative alliance reflected in this Agreement will be under the responsibility of the individual designated in writing no later than [*****] after the Closing Date for CureVac (“CureVac Alliance Manager”) and of the individual designated in writing no later than [*****] after the Closing Date for GSK (“GSK Alliance Manager”, and together with the CureVac Alliance Manager, the “Alliance Managers”), provided that the Alliance Managers under this Agreement and under the 2020 Collaboration Agreement shall be the same individuals. Each Alliance Manager will be the primary point of contact for the other Party on all matters relating to the operation of this Agreement and the 2020 Collaboration Agreement.

7.1.2 Development and Manufacturing Management. The management of the Development and Manufacturing activities hereunder will be under the responsibility of the individual designated in writing no later than [*****] after the Closing Date for CureVac (“CureVac Project Leader”) and of the individual designated in writing no later than [*****] after the Closing Date for GSK (“GSK Project Leader”, and together with the CureVac Project Leader, the “Project Leaders”). Each Project Leader will be the primary point of contact for the other Party on all matters relating to the COVID R&D Plan.

7.2 Joint Steering Committee

7.2.1 Establishment. No later than [*****] after the Closing Date the Parties will establish a joint steering committee (“Joint Steering Committee” or “JSC”) to oversee the Development, Manufacture and Commercialization of the COVID Products and to facilitate the exchange of information between the Parties. The JSC shall be comprised of four (4) representatives of CureVac and four (4) representatives of GSK, one representative being the Alliance Manager of the respective Party, in each case with appropriate scientific and technical expertise and sufficient seniority within the applicable Party consistent with the scope of the JSC’s responsibilities. Each Party may replace its JSC representatives at any time upon written notice to the other Party, provided, however, that each Party shall use all reasonable efforts (obligation de moyen) to ensure continuity on the JSC.

7.2.2 JSC Meetings. The JSC shall meet at least on a quarterly basis, or such other frequency as agreed by the Parties, by teleconference, videoconference or in person, provided that at least every [*****], or such other frequency as agreed by the Parties, the meeting shall be in person (which in–person meeting will be held at alternate facilities of each Party), unless agreed otherwise by the JSC representatives The JSC will have a quorum if at least one (1) representatives of each Party is present or participating. Each Party will be responsible for all of its own expenses of participating in the JSC meetings. The Parties will endeavor to schedule meetings of the JSC at least [*****] in advance. Each Party may call special meetings of the JSC with at least [*****]’prior written notice, except in exigent circumstances, to resolve particular matters requested by such Party and within the decision–making responsibility of the JSC. Each Party may invite guest participants to certain items on the agenda of the meetings, with reasonable prior notice, in order to discuss special technical or commercial topics, provided that such guest participants shall be bound by confidentiality and non–use obligations consistent with the terms of this Agreement and shall not have a voting right in such meeting. The chair of the JSC will alternate each Calendar Year, with CureVac to chair the first year. The Party chairing the JSC shall prepare the meeting agenda with input from the other Party.

7.2.3 JSC Minutes. The Alliance Manager of the Party chairing the JSC shall record the minutes of each JSC meeting in writing. Such minutes shall be circulated to the other Party’s Alliance Manager no later than [*****] following the meeting for review, comment and approval of the other Party. If no comments are received within [*****] Days of the receipt of the minutes by the other Party, unless otherwise agreed, they shall be deemed to be approved by the other Party. Furthermore, if the Parties are unable to reach agreement on the minutes within [*****] of the applicable meeting, the sections of the minutes that have been mutually agreed between the Parties by that date shall be deemed approved and, in addition, each Party shall record in the same document its own version of those sections of the minutes on which the Parties were not able to agree.

7.3 JSC Functions and Powers. The JSC will be responsible generally for facilitating the Parties’ interactions under this Agreement and specifically for overseeing the Development, Manufacture and Commercialization of the COVID Products. The JSC has (i) no jurisdiction to make any amendments to this Agreement, which right is reserved to the Parties; and (ii) no jurisdiction over any dispute relating to the validity, performance, construction or interpretation of this Agreement. The principal functions of the JSC will include:

(i) overseeing the Development of Collaboration COVID Vaccine Products in accordance with the COVID R&D Plan(s);

(ii) approving Product Adjustments;

(iii) approving the development of Pathogen Combination Products;

(iv) updating the initial COVID R&D Plan to include the further Development work;

(v) discussing and agreeing the Development budgets under the COVID R&D Plan(s);

(vi) the resolution and approval of any issue and recommendation from the Parties with respect to the modification of the COVID R&D Plan(s), including but not limited to modifications of the budget and timelines;

(vii) receiving written reports or presentations from GSK and CureVac of their respective progress with the further Development of each COVID Product summarizing their Development activities and the results thereof with respect to the applicable COVID Product and discuss at meetings the status, progress, and results of the Development of the respective COVID Product;

(viii) exchanging Development Data and other technical information;

(ix) discussing and agreeing on the entry of supply agreements that provide for the supply of Collaboration COVID Vaccine, and, as of the Option Exercise, the First–Gen COVID Vaccine Product, across the GSK Territories and the CureVac Territories; (x) discussing and agreeing on the entry of new agreements with governments and/or non–governmental organizations regarding the Development, Manufacturing and supply of the Collaboration COVID Vaccine, and, as of the Option Exercise, the First–Gen COVID Vaccine Product;

(xi) creating sub–committees, including the IP Sub–Committee pursuant to Section 7.6, a Commercialization sub–committee for the coordination of Commercialization activities for COVID Products by GSK in the GSK Territory and by CureVac in the CureVac Territory and a Manufacturing sub–committee for discussing COVID Product related Manufacturing and supply.

(xii) serving as a forum where each Party shall inform the other Party of any material feedback received from Regulatory Authorities in relation to any COVID Product;

(xiii) informing on material regulatory filings and regulatory interactions related to the COVID Products;

(xiv) discussing and deciding on whether to Develop (temporarily or completely) several different COVID Products in parallel, and if several COVID Products are developed in parallel, decide on whether the Development will be completed only for one or for more than one COVID Product;

(xv) fostering the collaborative relationship between the Parties;

(xvi) discussing and agreeing, and reviewing no more than once each Calendar Year, the rate payable for distribution costs comprised in the COGS, taking into account possible cost savings, efficiency savings or increases in the underlying costs;

(xvii) resolving disputes between the Parties; and

(xviii) such other functions as assigned to it under this Agreement or as agreed by the Parties.

If the JSC establishes a sub–committee in accordance with this Section 7.3, unless otherwise agreed, the governance provisions of this Section 7 shall apply accordingly to such sub–committee.

The Parties shall, within the JSC, in good faith evolve the composition and operation of the JSC to reflect the change in roles and responsibilities of the Parties in the further Development, Manufacturing and Commercialization of the COVID Products.

Neither Party shall make its consent (whereby either Party may give or withhold its consent in its sole discretion) subject to a change of the financial model for the Development, Manufacturing and Commercialization of COVID Products set forth in this Agreement or on the payment by the other Party of any additional consideration under this Agreement (although, for clarity, any costs incurred by the other Party in respect of obtaining a license to any In–Licensed IP shall be taken in account in the calculation of Net Profits, as set forth in this Agreement).

7.4 JSC Decisions

7.4.1 Initial Dispute Resolution. Without prejudice to the discretionary decision rights granted to a Party in this Agreement, a Clinical Supply Agreement, a Commercial Supply Agreement or a Quality Agreement, actions to be taken by the JSC and any subcommittee shall be taken only following a unanimous vote, with each Party’s representatives collectively having one (1) vote. If any subcommittee fails to reach unanimous agreement on a matter before it for decision for a period in excess of [*****], the matter shall be referred to the JSC.

7.4.2 Final Decision–Making.

(i) On matters concerning COVID Products, other than the matters under (ii) and (iii) on which GSK has the deciding vote, if the JSC fails to reach unanimous agreement on a matter before it for decision for a period in excess of [*****], the matter may be referred by either Party to the Executive Officers, who shall meet in person or via teleconference within [*****] and attempt to resolve such matter in good faith. If the Executive Officers fail to reach agreement as to such matter for a period in excess of [*****] from their initial meeting, the final decision on such undecided matter may be brought for dispute resolution in accordance with Section 16.5 below.

(ii) Without limiting Section 7.4.2(iii), on matters concerning the Development, Manufacture and Commercialization of Pathogen Combination Products, GSK shall have the deciding vote, provided that GSK shall not unilaterally reduce its diligence obligations under this Agreement, make material amendments to the COVID R&D Plan(s) for such Pathogen Combination Products (including the budget and the number of FTEs agreed in the respective COVID R&D Plan) which have an adverse impact on CureVac or on the Development or Commercialization of other COVID Products, adopt a decision that would cause significant delay of the Development timelines as set forth in the respective COVID R&D Plan or would oblige CureVac to perform additional obligations under this Agreement or the COVID R&D Plan for the respective Pathogen Combination Product.

(iii) GSK shall also have the deciding vote on any matter that jeopardizes GSK’s (or its Affiliates’) responsibilities as Regulatory Approval holder for a COVID Product in a given country (including those regarding certification of Manufactured batches by a qualified person and batch release in accordance with GMP).

7.5 Information and results. Except as otherwise provided in this Agreement, the Parties will make available and disclose to one another Development Data and other results of work conducted prior to and in preparation for the JSC meetings, by the deadline and in the level of detail, form and format to be designated by the JSC; provided, however, that, in any event, each Party shall to the extent reasonably possible provide the other Party with monthly updates regarding its activities hereunder, preferably [*****] prior to each JSC meeting.

7.6 IP Sub–Committee. No later than [*****] after the Closing Date the JSC shall establish an IP Sub–Committee comprising up to two patent attorneys of each Party. The IP Sub–Committee shall be the forum for discussion and liaison between the Parties concerning filings to be made for Program Patent Rights and Joint Patent Rights. For the avoidance of doubt, the IP Sub–Committee is not a decision–making forum, except (in the first instance) with respect to matters concerning the maintenance of the Program Patent Rights and Joint Patent Rights, and, in relation to the Program Patent Rights and Joint Patent Rights, the patent term extension strategy, patent litigation, patent defense and enforcement, but serves as a forum for discussion where the Parties may coordinate and consult with each other with respect to any such filings. The IP Sub–Committee shall in particular: (i) convene no less than once every [*****] to facilitate regular interaction regarding the intellectual property matters arising from this Agreement (or any Ancillary Agreement); (ii) exchange information necessary to keep the Parties reasonably informed of each other’s prosecution of patents and trademarks that form part of the intellectual property rights licensed under this Agreement; (iii) review any Invention arising under a Program (including any Joint Product Invention and Joint Other Invention) and determine in good faith the ownership thereof, in accordance with this Agreement; (iv) coordinate intellectual property aspects of publications or presentation of Development Data, in accordance with Section 11.7; (v) cooperatively review and discuss potential material infringements by Third Parties as well as the potential infringement by either Party or its Affiliates of any intellectual property of a Third Party pursuant to Development, Manufacturing or Commercialization under this Agreement; and (vi) escalate any intellectual property–related issue on which the Parties are not in agreement to the JSC.

16. General Provisions


16.5 Dispute Resolution

16.5.1 Unless otherwise set forth in this Agreement, in the event of any dispute arising out of or in connection with this Agreement, including any alleged breach under this Agreement or any dispute relating to the validity, performance, construction or interpretation of this Agreement, the Parties shall refer such dispute to the CEO (or its C–level delegate) of CureVac and the President of Vaccines (or another member of the global corporate execute team) of GSK. If the dispute has not been settled pursuant to the said rules within [*****] days following the reference of the dispute to the senior management representatives of the Parties, either Party may submit the dispute to final and binding arbitration.

16.5.2 Any dispute arising out of or in connection with this Agreement, including any issue relating to the validity, performance, construction or interpretation of this Agreement, which cannot be resolved amicably between the Parties after following the procedure set forth in Section 16.5.1, shall be submitted to and settled by arbitration in accordance with the arbitration rules of the World Intellectual Property Organization (the “WIPO”) in effect on the date of the commencement of the arbitration proceedings. The existence, nature and details of any such dispute(s), and all communications between the Parties related thereto, shall be considered Confidential Information of the Parties and shall be treated in accordance with the terms of Section 11 above. Any Confidential Information may be disclosed by either Party to counsel, experts or other advisors on the arbitration under obligations of confidentiality. The decision of the arbitrators shall be final and binding upon the Parties. The location of arbitration will be Zurich, Switzerland. The arbitration will be heard and determined by three (3) arbitrators, with one arbitrator being appointed by each Party and the third arbitrator being appointed by the WIPO. The language of the arbitration proceeding will be English. Notwithstanding the provisions of this Section 16.5.2, each Party shall have the right to seek interim injunctive relief in any court of competent jurisdiction as such Party deems necessary to preserve its rights and to protect its interests.