News

3.12.2021
The establishment of a national vaccine research company moves forward

(Content owner Tampere University)
The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health of Finland, the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) and Tampere University (Tampere University Foundation) have been preparing the launch of a jointly owned vaccine research company. The new company will merge the existing commercial vaccine research functions of the Vaccine Research Center of Tampere University and THL. The Finnish government approved the establishment of the new company on 2 December.

The Finnish government will own 51% and Tampere University 49% of the new company, which is to become a special-assignment company of the state, with the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health responsible for its ownership management. The new company will be called Rokotetutkimuskeskus Finvac Oy, and it will be headquartered in Tampere, Finland. Tampere is already the primary location of the commercial vaccine research functions of the Vaccine Research Center of Tampere University and THL.

Following the government’s decision, the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health of Finland, the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare and Tampere University Foundation will sign the company formation documents. The company will be registered after the documents have been signed. The Board of the new company, which is authorised to make decisions now that the Finnish government has approved the establishment of the new company, will begin to perform its duties.

In the state budget for 2021, €8 million has been allocated to the establishment of the company.  The sum is intended to cover initial capital and pre-formation costs.

The new company is established to secure and strengthen Finnish capabilities in vaccine research and to contribute in ensur that well researched, effective and safe vaccines are available to Finland and the rest of the world. A further aim is to prepare for health hazards, such as pandemics, and to increase research investments in Finland. 

Read more: News release by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health announcing the government’s decision (in Finnish)

16.8.2021
Tampere University’s vaccine research services to be incorporated into a new special-assignment company

(Content owner Tampere University)
On Friday 13 August, the Board of Tampere University confirmed the corporatisation of the commercial vaccine research services provided by Tampere University’s Vaccine Research Center into a new special-assignment company, which will be established and co-owned by the Finnish state and Tampere University.

Tampere University, the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health and the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) have been making preparations for the establishment of a national vaccine research company since the autumn of 2019. Tampere University’s Vaccine Research Center and THL are both internationally recognised and the two leading vaccine research units in Finland.

As the new special-assignment company will bring together the commercial vaccine research services of the Vaccine Research Center and THL and create a unique hub of complementary expertise, it will open up excellent opportunities not only for developing a full range of high-quality services relating to clinical vaccine research but also for succeeding in international competition. The new company is to be headquartered in Tampere.

Decisions related to the establishment of the new company have been made by the Parliament on behalf of the Finnish state and the Board of Tampere University on behalf of the University. The act governing the corporatisation of the commercial vaccine research services provided by THL (1159/202) was confirmed on 17 December 2020. When the legislative preparations were underway, a special emphasis was placed on Tampere University’s role as the co-founder of the new company.

At its meeting on 13 August 2021, the Board of Tampere University decided to approve the establishment of the company and the revised corporate charters and authorised the President to make any necessary technical amendments to the charters and manage the launch of the company’s activities in collaboration with the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health and THL.

“The establishment of the special-assignment company is a strategically significant opening that is expected to steer the development of the international competitiveness of Finland’s clinical vaccine research in the years to come,“ says Ilkka Herlin, Chairman of the Board of Tampere University.

“Over its more than 15 years of operation, Tampere University’s Vaccine Research Center has established a strong international position. Rather than fundamental or applied research, the clinical vaccine studies conducted by the Center fall into the category of commercial services and contract research. Considering that the field of vaccine research and the competition therein are undergoing rapid change, continuing the activities in their current administrative form was no longer seen as a viable option from the perspective of risk management. By founding the new company together with the Finnish state, we can lay a solid foundation for the activities and their responsible development. The new company can be fully expected to make a strong start and enjoy extensive growth opportunities owing, in particular, to the excellence and RDI expertise of the Faculty of Medicine and Health Technology,” Herlin says.

Enquiries: President Mari Walls, tel. +358 29 452 1001, president.tau@tuni.fi