GSK merges consumer and nutritional business

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has merged its consumer and nutritional healthcare divisions in the UK to create a £1bn business and bring together its brands including Lucozade, Ribena, and NiQuitin.

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The healthcare firm hopes that merging the two divisions will help it become the world’s “first fast-moving consumer healthcare (FMCH) company” by combining science with insight-driven consumer innovation.

The merger, which takes effect in January, is part of GSK’s overhaul of the business. Earlier this year it announced plans to divest more than 20 brands, including Nytol and controversial weight loss drug Alli, to concentrate on its fast growing core brands in four categories; nutrition, wellness, oral care and skin health.

Peter Harding, general manager of GSK Consumer Healthcare Great Britain and Ireland, says: “As a combined business, we will have a deeper understanding of everyday wellness and the health issues which people face. We will be able to drive aggressive category growth by delivering innovative products speedily to market that are rooted in science.

“Our reorganisation will simplify the way in which we serve our retail partners through our points of contact and allow us to use our resources more flexibly to meet their needs. Our aim is to work closely with retailer partners to grow their businesses alongside our own.”

GSK appointed Emma Walmsley as president of Consumer Healthcare Europe and president designate of its Worldwide Consumer Healthcare business in May this year while former InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) comms chief Leslie McGibbon has joined to head up corporate affairs for its consumer healthcare team.

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