What are Moderna owners' net worth? Meet new billionaires who pioneered Covid vaccine

The two co-founders and a key investor now rank amongst Forbes' 400 richest Americans thanks to the pandemic


                            What are Moderna owners' net worth? Meet new billionaires who pioneered Covid vaccine
The Moderna Headquarters located in Cambridge, Massachusetts. (Fletcher/Wikimedia Commons)

The Covid-19 pandemic was hell for many people. From lost jobs to troubles with rent, millions of Americans were left poorer due to the pandemic. But a select group of Americans (the 400 richest Americans) saw their collective wealth grow by over 40% - amongst them are the founders of Moderna. The two men behind the biotech giant and their original investor are now worth billions and have made it to Forbes' list of 400 richest Americans.

At the heart of that growth is the Moderna Covid vaccine, which back in November 2020 they claimed was 100% effective against severe disease. The Cambridge, Massachusets based company was the first to begin testing its vaccine on human patients, and subsequently became a key player in the international vaccine market. With billions of doses shipped out, the company appears to have seen a healthy rise in its stock price during the pandemic. 

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On October 7, 2020, Moderna's stock price was $73.37. Exactly a year later, it is now worth $302.42. That massive rise, of over 300% has also helped the three men behind the firm. Meet America's newest billionaires - Moderna founders Noubar Afeyan and Robert Langer, and investor Timothy Springer.

A screenshot of Moderna's stock price over the past year.

Noubar Afeyan net worth

The 59-year-old American-Canadian entrepreneur is a very wealthy man, and it's not just thanks to Moderna. A graduate of McGill University and MIT, Afeyan has helped start more than 70 life sciences and technology businesses over the past several decades. Those include Flagship Pioneering, PerSeptive Biosystems, Chemgenics Pharmaceuticals, and Affinnova. He also owns shares in 12 publicly traded firms, including Moderna.

As a result, Afeyan has amassed a huge fortune over the past several decades. He is now worth $3.7 billion and ranks 212 on Forbes' list. A majority of that wealth comes from the millions of units of stock he holds in Moderna, reportedly valued at over $3 billion. On top of that, he makes $530,000 a year as Moderna's CEO. 

Moderna CEO and co-founder Noubar Afeyan. (Noubar Afeyan/Twitter)

Robert Langer net worth

Moderna's second co-founder has an equally impressive resume. After degrees from Cornell and MIT, Langer worked as a cancer researcher. He's well regarded as a pioneer in biotech, and is estimated to be the "most cited engineer in history". He reportedly has around 350,000 citations and more than 1,500 articles published. On top of that, he also holds more than 1,400 patents and patent applications, many of which he's licensed out to other firms.

Langer has also been involved in the founding of over 20 biotech firms, with many of which he holds some shares. But it's Moderna that has the most value. His 3% stake in the company is now worth more than $1 billion alone, giving him a total net worth of $3.5 billion. It also helps that he works on the side with MIT, and also runs the Langer Research Lab at the university, which is one of the largest biomedical engineering labs in the world. 

Moderna co-founder and MIT professor Robert Langer. (Langer Lab website/MIT)

Timothy Springer net worth

An immunologist and professor at Harvard Medical School, Springer invested $5 million in Moderna back in 2010. Most of that money comes from the other firms he's founded or invested in, like Selecta Biosciences, Morphic Therapeutic, and Scholar Rock. He also made $100 million on his first venture LeukoSite, which he sold in 1999. But all those investments paled compared to his Moderna one.

When he invested, Springer became the fourth-largest shareholder in Moderna and made $400 million from the firm's IPO. Now, thanks to the pandemic he's worth $4.4 billion, all accumulated from the various biotech firms he invested in. But his 3.5% share in Moderna alone is worth a considerable fortune, around $870 million according to Forbes. Like Langer and Afeyan, Springer isn't too big on his wealth. All three men donate heavily to charity and maintain a very low-profile lifestyle. 

Timothy Springer, Harvard professor and investor in Moderna. (Harvard University)

That said, there's no denying they've managed to make the most of the pandemic. They were added to Forbes' list of the 400 richest Americans on October 5, based on records available from September. As for Moderna itself, the firm simply continues to grow and grow. On August 9, 2021, the firm's stock hit a record high of $484.47. While it has come down since, it's still worth a lot, and all thanks to Moderna's Covid-19 vaccine which has quickly become an essential element in the battle against the pandemic. 

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