GSK has been granted permission by the Commerce Commission to acquire healthcare company Pfizer Inc. GSK and Pfizer both supply cold and flu treatments, and systemic pain relief treatments that can be purchased without a prescription in New Zealand. The Commerce Commission had to take into consideration whether or not the two companies were in close competition with one another.

Chairman Dr Mark Berry said the Commission is satisfied that the acquisition is unlikely to substantially lessen competition in any New Zealand market. “We consider that GSK and Pfizer are not close competitors in the supply of cold and flu treatments, systemic pain relief treatments or any other consumer healthcare products, and that the presence of suppliers of competing products is likely to constrain the merged entity.”

GSK is a global pharmaceuticals company active in the research, development, manufacturing and supply of prescription pharmaceuticals, human vaccines, and consumer healthcare pharmaceuticals that are available without a prescription. While Pfizer’s global consumer healthcare business develops, manufactures and supplies non-prescription medicines in the areas of pain management, gastrointestinal health, respiratory, dietary supplements and personal care products.