GlaxoSmithKline gets EC approval buy Pfizer's consumer health biz

GlaxoSmithKline gets EC approval to buy Pfizer's consumer health biz

9:28 AM, 16th July 2019
GlaxoSmithKline logo

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM: The European Commission has approved the acquisition of Pfizer's consumer health business by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). The decision is conditional upon the global divestment of Pfizer's topical pain management business carried out under the ThermaCare brand.

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Pfizer's consumer health business are both manufacturers and suppliers of a variety of consumer healthcare pharmaceuticals, which are typically available to patients without a prescription from a doctor and generally referred to as “over-the-counter” (OTC) pharmaceutical products.

Both companies are active in the European Economic Area (EEA) in a number of OTC product categories, namely topical pain management (creams, gels, spays and patches to treat pain locally), systemic pain management (products for oral intake targeting pain centrally), cold and flu treatments (e.g. multi-symptom treatments, antitussives), gastrointestinal treatments (e.g. antiacids, antiflatulents, antiulcerants), nutrition and digestive health (e.g. vitamins, supplements, laxatives), as well as sedatives and sleeping aids.

Based on the investigation, the Commission was concerned that the acquisition would reduce competition for topical pain management products, possibly resulting in price increases in a number of EEA countries, including Austria, Germany, Ireland, Italy and the Netherlands.

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