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GSK and Pfizer merge consumer businesses to create 'global OTC leader'

GSK will have a 68% stake in the new business, entitled GSK Consumer Healthcare
GSK will have a 68% stake in the new business, entitled GSK Consumer Healthcare

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Pfizer will combine their consumer healthcare businesses, bringing the Sensodyne, Panadol and Advil brands under one company.

GSK will have a 68% stake in the joint venture, which will bring its Sensodyne, Voltaren and Panadol brands and Pfizer’s Advil, Centrum and Caltrate products under one company, entitled GSK Consumer Healthcare, the manufacturers announced yesterday (December 19).

GSK Consumer Healthcare will be a category leader in pain relief, respiratory, vitamin and mineral supplements, digestive, skin and therapeutic oral health, and will make up 7.3% of the global OTC product market, the companies added.

Announcing the merger, the manufacturers claimed to have recorded combined global sales of £9.8 billion in 2017. The new company is expected to generate total annual costs savings of £0.5bn by 2022, according to GSK.

Emma Walmsley, GSK CEO – who will become the new company’s chair – said GSK eventually intends to separate the combined business from GSK to create two UK-based companies, one focused on pharmaceuticals and vaccines, with dedicated research and development resource, and the other a “world-leading consumer healthcare company”.

“Ultimately, our goal is to create two exceptional, UK-based global companies…that are each well positioned to deliver improving returns to shareholders and significant benefits to patients and consumers,” she said.

Albert Bourla, Pfizer chief operating officer and incoming CEO, said: “The combination of these leading businesses with distinct regional and category strengths will be more sustainable and broader in scope than either company individually.”

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