Pfizer, GSK Enter Joint Venture Creating Global Health Care Business

January 2, 2019

In a recent press release, Pfizer Inc and GlaxoSmithKline plc (GSK) announced they have entered into an agreement to create a premier global consumer health care company.

“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,” said Ian Read, chairman and current chief executive officer, Pfizer. “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.”

According to GSK, the joint venture will deliver stronger sales, cash flow, and earnings growth. Category leading Power Brands, science-based innovation, and substantial cost synergies will lead the development of this joint venture.

Both Pfizer and GSK will bring together two portfolios of trusted consumer health brands. These include GSK’s Sensodyne, Voltaren and Panadol and Pfizer’s Advil, Centrum and Caltrate.

“The Joint Venture will be a category leader in Pain Relief, Respiratory, Vitamin and Mineral Supplements, Digestive Health, Skin Health and Therapeutic Oral Health,” a GSK press release explained. “The Joint Venture will be the global leader in OTC products with a market share of 7.3% ahead of its nearest competitor at 4.1% and have number 1 or 2 market share positions in all key geographies, including the US and China.”

Emma Walmsley, current CEO of GSK, will be the chair of the new joint venture, Brian McNamara, current CEO of GSK Consumer Healthcare will be the CEO of the joint venture, and Tobias Hestler, current CFO of GSK Consumer Healthcare will also be the joint venture’s CFO.

“The transaction we have announced today is a unique opportunity to accelerate this work,” said Ms Walmsley. “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.”

GSK noted that within 3 years of the closing of the transaction, GSK plans to separate the joint venture.

“The intended separation of the Group will allow the two resulting companies to be established with appropriate capital structures for their future investment needs and capital allocation priorities,” GSK wrote.

According to GSK, the proposed transaction is “subject to approval by GSK shareholders and conditional upon the receipt of certain anti-trust authority approvals.” However, Pfizer said that the Board of Directors of both companies have “unanimously approved the transaction under which Pfizer will contribute its consumer healthcare business to GlaxoSmithKline’s existing consumer healthcare business.”

The final transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2019.

Julie Gould


GlaxoSmithKline. GlaxoSmithKline plc and Pfizer Inc to form new world-leading Consumer Healthcare Joint Venture [press release]. Accessed January 2, 2019.

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