Health Desk- 29 June, 2020: Unilever bought more than 82 per cent stakes in GlaxoSmithKline's health food and drinks business in Bangladesh from Setfirst on Sunday through the block market in its push to further its footprint in Asia's fast-growing economies.
The block market is a platform of a stock exchange where a large number of securities are traded in a single transaction at a negotiated price.
Some 9,875,144 shares of GSK Bangladesh were traded on the block market worth Tk 2,020.75 crore at Tk 2,046.30 each, data from the Dhaka Stock Exchange showed.
The remaining 18 per cent shares are held by general investors and institutional investors. Of them, institutional investors own 15.53 per cent share, general investors 2.12 per cent and foreign investors 0.37 per cent as of February 29 this year, according to the DSE.
Setfirst, one of the corporate directors of the multinational company, expressed its intention to sell its entire holding of 98.75 lakh shares to Unilever Overseas Holdings BV in compliance with the stock market regulator, the company said last week on the DSE website.
When the primary agreement was inked in 2018, GSK's stock was trading at Tk 1,084, but it traded Tk 2,110 yesterday.
Unilever is also purchasing GSK's entire health food and drinks portfolio in India as well as in 20 other Asian countries for about $3.74 billion, after it fought off competition from rivals Nestlé and Coca-Cola.
GSK is a science-led global healthcare company with a broad range of innovative medicines, vaccines and consumer healthcare products.
The history of GSK Bangladesh goes back to almost seven decades, and following a number of mergers and acquisitions, GSK Bangladesh, a subsidiary of the British multinational company GSK Plc, started its journey in 2002.
GSK Bangladesh's products include nutrition and oral healthcare products, led by brands like Horlicks and Sensodyne. The consumer healthcare business delivered a compound annual growth rate of 6.8 per cent in the last two years.