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Drugs and vaccines help pharma giant GSK beat expectations

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GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) production building. The pharmaceutical company has updated shareholders (Andy Buchanan/PA) (PA Archive)
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) production building. The pharmaceutical company has updated shareholders (Andy Buchanan/PA) (PA Archive)

Pharmaceuticals giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has revealed turnover ahead of expectations for the past quarter after strong trading its drugs and vaccine arms.

The company revealed that turnover grew by 5% to £9.1 billion in the third quarter, surpassing an analyst consensus of around £8.7 billion.

It said pharmaceuticals sales lifted by 5.5% to £4.4 billion on the back of strong growth from new and speciality medicines.

Meanwhile, the group’s vaccines business saw sales rise by 7% to £2.2 billion for the period.

Elsewhere, chief executive officer Dame Emma Walmsley hailed “increased momentum” across its consumer healthcare business, which is due to be spun off next year.

Emma Walmsley, chief executive officer at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK/PA) (PA Media)
Emma Walmsley, chief executive officer at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK/PA) (PA Media)

The consumer arm, which operates brands including Sensodyne, saw turnover rise by 3% to £2.5 billion.

Ms Walmsley said: “GSK has delivered another quarter of strong business performance, with double-digit sales growth in pharmaceuticals and vaccines, increased momentum in consumer healthcare, and continued discipline on costs.

“This has allowed us to improve our full-year guidance and, alongside the progress in strengthening our research and development pipeline, reinforces our confidence in the outlook for a step-change in growth and performance in 2022 and beyond.

“We also continue to make excellent progress towards unlocking the value of consumer healthcare through a successful demerger in mid-2022.”

Ms Walmsley has come under pressure from hedge funds in recent months as GSK prepares to split its consumer healthcare business from its pharmaceutical arm next year.

In September, Bluebell Capital joined fellow hedge fund Elliott Management to call for a change at the top of the drugmaker.

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