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GSK set to complete $20 billion Novartis asset swap next week
February 25, 2015 / 4:49 PM / 3 years ago

GSK set to complete $20 billion Novartis asset swap next week

A British Airways airplane flies past a signage for pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) in London April 22, 2014. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor

LONDON (Reuters) - GlaxoSmithKline (GSK.L) said on Wednesday it expected to conclude a $20 billion-plus three-part asset swap with Novartis NOVN.VX in the week commencing March 2, following progress in obtaining clearances for the deal.

GSK is forming a consumer health joint venture with Novartis, while at the same time buying the Swiss company’s vaccines business and divesting its cancer drugs portfolio to Novartis.

The two companies originally announced the transaction in April 2014 to bolster their best businesses and exit weaker ones as the drugs industry contends with healthcare spending cuts and increased generic competition.

Reporting by Ben Hirschler; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle

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