Matt was a PULSE volunteer; Arthur Butler is an Operations Manager.

Why our transaction with Novartis is different

With a trend towards consolidation in the pharmaceutical industry, there have been a number of large scale mergers and acquisitions (M&A) over the past several years. But what makes GSK’s transaction with Novartis different?

What we have achieved is an asset swap which allows both companies to build on their existing strengths while at the same time creating significant value for GSK assets which we have built up over time. Transactions like this are incredibly complicated to execute, but when you do, it can have tremendous benefits for the business and for patients and consumers.

What we have done

  • First, we have acquired Novartis’s vaccines business, excluding influenza vaccines. This further strengthens our position as the world’s leading vaccine manufacturer expanding our portfolio in meningitis, building our geographic reach particularly in the US, and bringing together expertise in virology and bacterial infection research.
  • Second, we have combined our Consumer Healthcare businesses to create a new joint venture Consumer Healthcare company. This new business is now a market leader in more than 30 countries as well as being the number one company worldwide for over-the-counter medicines. Some of our key brands now include: SensodyneVoltarenTherafluPanadolOtrivinHorlicksZovirax & Abreva.
  • Finally, we have sold our marketed Oncology portfolio and the R&D activities related to it, to Novartis. While this is a fast-growing business for us, we were able to realize significant value and we believe that because Novartis is a more established Oncology company they will be able to broaden patient access to these important medicines.
Animation showing the Novartis transaction


Each portion of this transaction fulfils our strategy of creating a simpler, stronger and more balanced platform for long-term growth across our three core businesses: Pharmaceuticals, Consumer Healthcare and Vaccines. More importantly, the transaction enables us to deliver far-reaching benefits to patients and consumers by bringing both companies’ portfolios of vaccines and consumer healthcare products to more people in more geographies.

What next?

There is a significant amount of work that now needs to be done to integrate the Vaccines and Consumer Healthcare businesses which is our focus for the immediate future.

We are bringing 12,000 people with talent and expertise from Novartis into our Vaccines business and new Consumer Healthcare company.

We will work to complete the integration as quickly and as smoothly as possible and to maintain ‘business as usual’ wherever we can.

Explore more about the GSK/Novartis transaction

Investor information:

The GSK Story

Watch our story. Find out what we do and why we do it.


people are at the heart of what we do we

want to help them do more

feel better and live longer because

healthy people make healthy communities

and healthy communities are at the heart

of strong societies

for more than a hundred and fifty years

we've helped transform the lives and

futures of millions of people

achieved some notable milestones in the


despite this today million still don't

have access to basic health care

millions more suffer from everyday


and there are still thousands of

diseases without effective treatments

so we're working not just to develop

tomorrow's medicines

but also to find new ways to get today's

treatments to

everybody who needs them and to do this

in a way that is sustainable for our

business in the long term

this means we're always looking to

involve happy to change radically when

we need to

and challenge preconceptions about how

things are done

for example because discovering new

medicines is both difficult and


we found new ways to speed up the


so while researchers now work in small

one or more independent teams

keeping them closer to the science and

their projects

and as a result the number of new

medicines and vaccines we've developed

has grown

in areas like HIV asthma and diabetes

but we know that we can't do it all alone

especially in areas where research is

particularly challenging

like the science around antibiotics in

alzheimer's disease

so we're working in partnership with

thousands of external groups to help

find better solutions

faster like our collaborative project to

develop the world's first malaria


we've been working on this for more than

30 years

and we've committed to making available

a not-for-profit price

all our groundbreaking work with Save

the Children
we're combining our scientific expertise

and global reach with their local


to help save the lives of one million

in some of the world's poorest countries

once our new products have made into

production we want to get them to the

people who need them

wherever they live so we price our

products at levels that reflect the

country's ability to pay

and make them in formats tailored to

local needs meanwhile we're working hard

to ensure that those who prescribe all

have the information they need to ensure

patients interests are
always put first ok that's why we're

changing how we interact with doctors

and health professionals

it's also why we're making the data from

the trials on medicines available to

external researchers

and publishing all our findings with a

positive or negative

we can only make all this happen

each and every one of us is guided by

the values of our company

and stays focused on what really matters

people everywhere need better health


and we can help them get it by doing

what we do best

developing medicines vaccines and

Consumer Healthcare Products

and improving access to them in the


we can create value for shareholders

build a sustainable and profitable


and fulfill our mission of helping

people to do more

feel better live longer