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GSK and Pfizer combine healthcare units in multibillion dollar deal

Published on 19/12/18 at 10:11am

American multinational Pfizer and British firm GlaxoSmithKline are set to combine their consumer healthcare units in a venture worth billions.

Under the terms of the deal GSK will be the majority stakeholder, owning 68% of the new business. Pfizer will own the remaining 32%.

Meanwhile, Pfizer will be entitled to its pro rata share of the new company’s earnings which will be paid on a quarterly basis. The two businesses had combined sales worth $12.7 billion (£10 billion) in 2017.

Pfizer CEO Ian Read commented: “We are pleased to announce this new joint venture for Pfizer Consumer Healthcare, delivering on our commitment to complete the strategic review for this business in 2018.”

“Pfizer and GSK have an excellent track record of creating successful collaborations, and we look forward to working together again to unlock the potential of our combined consumer healthcare businesses”

 The new player will lead in OTC products around the world with a global market share of 7.3%. It is hoped that the deal will save around £0.5 billion by 2022.

The new venture will be led by current GSK Consumer Healthcare CEO Brian McNamara and chaired by GSK chief Emma Walmsley.

The deal will eventually see the founding of two new UK based companies focused on pharmaceuticals/vaccines and consumer healthcare respectively.

GlaxoSmithKline CEO Emma Walmsley commented: “Eighteen months ago, I set out clear priorities and a capital allocation framework for GSK to improve our long-term competitive performance and to strengthen our ability to bring new breakthrough medicines and better healthcare products to people around the world. We have improved our operating performance and have set out a new approach to R&D.”

“The transaction we have announced today is a unique opportunity to accelerate this work. Through the combination of GSK and Pfizer’s consumer healthcare businesses we will create substantial further value for shareholders. At the same time, incremental cashflows and visibility of the intended separation will help support GSK’s future capital planning and further investment in our pharmaceuticals pipeline.”

Shares in GSK jumped 5% in early morning trading in response to the announcement. Pfizer shares were down 1.65%.

Louis Goss

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