In an unusual business relationship, biotechnology Modern (NASDAQ: MRNA) and equestrian king Uber Technologies (NYSE: UBER) is collaborating on a program to raise awareness about coronavirus vaccines.
According to a press release released by both companies, they will “initially work together to provide available, credible information on vaccine safety through Uber’s in-app announcements … [and] work with public health and other organizations to identify further opportunities to support ongoing efforts to expand access to COVID-19 vaccines. “
Moderna has developed and marketed one of only two coronavirus vaccines that have received emergency use approval (EUA) from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Its mRNA-1273 and Pfizer and BioNTechBNT162b2 is currently distributed and administered across the country. Both rollouts have been slow. Although only marginally effective, this new initiative would be welcome.
In addition to raising awareness about coronavirus vaccines, Moderna and Uber are considering more direct ways to get Americans inoculated. These include, among other things, embedding Uber route planning in booking immunization appointments.
In the press release, Moderna CEO Stephane Bancel said this is only the first of what will be a series of collaborations on biotechnology.
“As part of our commitment to help tackle COVID-19, Moderna will work with a coalition of partners to educate, build trust around and raise awareness of the importance of vaccination in the communities significantly affected by the pandemic, “Bancel said. He did not identify these partners.
Last month, Uber promised to provide 10 million free or discounted rides for people to receive their shots of vaccine. The initiative aims to serve people in disadvantaged communities.