GSK to Sell Remaining Stake in Haleon, Looks to Raise $1.52B

GSK Labs_iStock, 13threephotography

Pictured: GSK laboratories in Dresden, Germany/iStock, 13threephotography

GSK on Thursday unveiled plans to let go of its remaining 4.2% stake in its spinoff consumer health brand Haleon, which corresponds to 385 million shares.

The divestment—conducted through Goldman Sachs International and Bank of America—involves offering GSK’s ordinary shares to Haleon’s institutional investors. GSK will determine the offer price through an accelerated bookbuilding offering process, which will start “immediately,” according to its SEC filing.

GSK said that it would issue another announcement to disclose the final offer price after completing the process, though Reuters reported Friday morning that the pharma made £1.25 billion, or approximately $1.52 billion.

Haleon has its origins in a December 2018 partnership between Pfizer and GSK, which at the time decided to team and create a global consumer healthcare company. Under the terms of the agreement, Pfizer owned a 32% equity stake and was able to appoint three of the nine members of the consumer brand’s board of directors. The remaining two-thirds of the venture went to GSK.

The deal closed in July 2019 creating a “world-class pure-play consumer healthcare business,” Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla said at the time. The partners positioned their joint venture to be a global leader in over-the-counter medicines, specializing in pain relief, vitamins, minerals and supplements, as well as respiratory and therapeutic oral health products.

GSK announced early on that it had plans to spin the joint venture out as an independent company. “GSK will have the sole right to decide whether and when to initiate a separation,” the pharma indicated, adding that it also had the option to “sell all or part of its stake in the joint venture in a contemporaneous IPO.”

It reiterated demerger plans almost two years later in June 2021, with GSK CEO Emma Walmsley announcing that it was preparing to spin the consumer healthcare brand off as its own standalone business. GSK formally named the spinout as Haleon in February 2022 and launched it as its own entity on the London Stock Exchange in July 2022.

Amid the British pharma’s demerger, Pfizer in June 2022 also revealed that it would let go of its stake in Haleon.

Thursday’s announcement marks GSK’s fourth and final round of selling off its Haleon shares. The pharma made $1 billion from a divestment in May 2023, followed by a $1.1 billion haul from its second sell-off in October 2023. The third came in January 2024, with GSK making $1.24 billion.

Tristan Manalac is an independent science writer based in Metro Manila, Philippines. Reach out to him on LinkedIn or email him at tristan@tristanmanalac.com or tristan.manalac@biospace.com.

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