GlaxoSmithKline Plans to Divest Select OTC Brands

Apr 20, 2011
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GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) identified certain over-the-counter (OTC) brands in its consumer healthcare business that the company plans to divest. GSK had announced in February 2011 its intention to divest noncore OTC products as part of a strategy in its consumer healthcare business to focus on fast-growing priority brands and emerging markets.

The products to be divested, which are primarily sold in Europe and the US, had sales in 2010 of approximately £500 million ($812 million) or 10% of GSK’s total consumer healthcare revenue. They include: the analgesics Solpadeine, BC, and Goody’s; the vitamin and supplement product Abtei, the weight-management product Alli; and gastrointestional products Tagamet/Stomedine and Zantac OTC. A list of brands to be divested with annual sales of more than £5 million ($8.1 million) may be found here.

GSK said the products being divested lacked sufficient critical mass in some product categories, and certain other brands lacked focus due to other global priorities. GSK will begin communicating with interested parties during the next several weeks with the aim of divesting the products by late 2011.

Following the divestment, GSK’s consumer healthcare business will focus on three priority categories: oral health, wellness/OTC, and nutrition. On a pro forma basis, the retained business had sales of approximately £4.5 billion ($7.3 billion) in 2010 and grew at a compound annual growth rate of 6% between 2007–2010.