Market Overview

The Top Companies Benefiting from the Global Coronavirus Outbreak


The coronavirus story has been dominating the headlines. As it spreads globally, companies are racing to develop vaccines, and keep up with demand for protective clothing. Even the World Health Organization is advising that you "wash your hands frequently with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand rub if your hands are not visibly dirty." As the story unfolds, some of the top stocks to keep an eye on include The Yield Growth Corp. (CSE:BOSS)(OTC: BOSQF), Inovio Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: INO), Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ), Gilead Sciences Inc. (NASDAQ: GILD), and Alpha Pro Tech Ltd. (NYSE: APT).

The Yield Growth Corp. (CSE:BOSS)(OTCQB: BOSQF) BREAKING NEWS: The Yield Growth Corp. is pleased to announce that it is initiating stability testing and commercialization for a new product, an all-natural hand sanitizer that uses natural ingredients to fight against germs and bacteria. The BBC reported on January 31, 2020 that sales of hand sanitizers have spiked in U.K. pharmacies with some brands out of stock. According to Radiant Insights, Inc. thehand sanitizer market is expected to reach $5.5 billion by 2024 owing to rising consumer awareness towards hand hygiene and well-being.

As a protective measure against the coronavirus, the World Health Organization advises to, among other things, "wash your hands frequently with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand rub if your hands are not visibly dirty."

The Yield Growth sanitizer contains a blend of distilled water, witch hazel, food-grade ethanol alcohol and three essential oils: lavender, blood orange, and peppermint. "Our established manufacturing and distribution channels will allow us to bring our hand sanitizer to market quickly," says Yield Growth CEO Penny White. "Yield Growth is focused on creating plant-based, natural wellness products which are seeing surging interest worldwide. This product is yet another of our innovations designed to promote health and wellness with a focus on natural ingredients."

Witch hazel contains flavonoids, which contribute to its soothing, anti-inflammatory properties. It also has natural anti-microbial properties. Lavender also contains natural anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-inflammatory qualities yet is not harsh on the skin. It is mixed with blood orange and peppermint and is designed to energize and refresh the skin. "Hand sanitizer is your best friend," says Bhavna Solecki, Yield Growth Director of Research and Product Development. "People are looking for the most effective, convenient solution to stay clean and be healthy. Plant-powered products are not just good for human health, they are also good for the health of the earth."

Other related developments from around the markets include:

Inovio Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: INO) announced that it is collaborating with Beijing Advaccine Biotechnology Co. to advance the development in China of INO-4800, Inovio's vaccine against the recently emerged strain of coronavirus (2019-nCoV) that has killed numerous people and infected thousands more in China to date. Inovio recently announced that it is developing INO-4800 through Phase 1 human testing in the U.S. to evaluate safety and immunogenicity with the support of an initial grant up to $9 million from the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI). Inovio plans to rapidly develop INO-4800 against the new coronavirus and has already started preclinical testing and preparations for clinical product manufacturing. The goal of this collaboration is to leverage Advaccine's expertise to run a Phase 1 trial in China in parallel with Inovio's clinical development efforts in the U.S. Inovio and Advaccine will also work together to attract additional grant funding and further collaborations with larger vaccine companies in China to increase the speed of future testing of INO-4800.

Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) announced that its Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies will expand its existing partnership with the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), part of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) at the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, to seek treatment solutions for COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2 (also known as 2019-nCoV). This latest collaboration will enhance Janssen's ongoing work with global partners to screen a library of existing antiviral molecules, with the aim of identifying compounds with promising antiviral activity against SARS-CoV-2. The expanded partnership with BARDA builds on Johnson & Johnson's multipronged response to the COVID-19 outbreak. These efforts, in addition to the ongoing development of a potential vaccine candidate, bring hope of finding a solution against COVID-19 for communities in greatest need in China and around the world. "We must engage in rigorous research and development in order to identify therapeutic candidates with antiviral activity against the novel coronavirus. Our ambitious goal is to bring forward a solution for patients and ensure future generations do not have to live in fear of the potentially serious consequences of COVID-19," said Paul Stoffels, M.D., Vice Chairman of the Executive Committee and Chief Scientific Officer, Johnson & Johnson. "We have a proven track record in partnering with others to develop and deliver antiviral therapies that serve the needs of diverse populations worldwide. While we are at early stages, we are making that commitment again."

Gilead Sciences Inc. (NASDAQ: GILD) announced today that Michael Quigley, PhD has joined the company as Senior Vice President, Research Biology, bringing to the role deep experience in oncology and immuno-oncology biology. Dr. Quigley joins Gilead from Bristol-Myers Squibb, where most recently he was Vice President and Head, Tumor Microenvironment Modulation Thematic Research Center and Site Head of the Redwood City, California location. In that role, Dr. Quigley was responsible for setting strategy for Bristol-Myers Squibb's oncology discovery portfolio and business development activities, overseeing target identification, validation and preclinical development of large and small molecule therapies. He received a PhD in Immunology from Duke University and conducted his post-doctoral research at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Department of Pediatric Oncology. Dr. Quigley will report to William Lee, PhD, Executive Vice President of Research.

Alpha Pro Tech Ltd. (NYSE: APT) a leading manufacturer of products designed to protect people, products and environments, including disposable protective apparel and building products, today announced that the company has booked over $10.4 million in orders for APT's proprietary N-95 Particulate Respirator face mask since January 27, 2020 as a result of increased customer demand due to the outbreak of the novel Wuhan coronavirus (Covid-19). Lloyd Hoffman, President and Chief Executive officer of Alpha Pro Tech, commented, "Since January 27 we have received orders for our proprietary N-95 Particulate Respirator face mask representing roughly 24 times the revenue that we have recorded from sales of this product for each year since 2016. We have already commenced additional production of our N-95 face mask at our Salt Lake City, Utah facility, and we expect to continue to increase our production capacity."

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