Avacta shares rally as Boris Johnson confirms mass rapid COVID-19 test trials to commence next week

Shares in Avacta staged a late rally on Friday, closing 10 percent higher after Boris Johnson confirmed that rapid saliva-based COVID-19 tests will start to be trialed and distributed across the country from next week.

As part of the Downing Street update at 4PM on Friday, Johnson noted that the government will start to distribute and trial rapid tests next week including in areas where there may be localised outbreaks such as at universities.

Hospitals, care homes, universities and schools are expected to feature heavily in the trials, focusing on some of the worst-hit COVID-19 areas by geographical region and setting.

Referring to the rapid tests at around 4.15pm, he revealed:

“We’ve already bought millions of these tests, some of which are very simple, meaning you simply need to wipe the swab in your mouth and can give a result as quickly as in 15 minutes.”

Noting the importance of these tests in keeping more parts of the economy open, he also added that the government is taking the time to establish the logistics and distribution operation necessary for a ‘large-scale operation across the country’.

Are Avacta shares set to rocket ? What we we know so far

  • The government has confirmed Avacta is one of a few partners it is working with on Saliva-based tests. Avacta seems to be the only one with a rapid saliva-based test out of the four (read more).
  • City sources claim the boss of Avacta is ‘heavily involved’ in operation moonshot. Given the scale of testing envisaged and logistics needed, this seems plausible (read more).
  • There are signs it is making moves to further build the capacity required as Omega Diagnostics has had early talks (read more).
  • Avacta is expecting a ‘transformational year’ and is looking for a fourth quarter approval of the test. Trials commencing next week would fit the timeline (read more).

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