After initial an postponement of the deal closing, GSK has finalised the divestment of its Drinks Bottling and Distribution Business to Suntory Beverage & Food Nigeria Limited . In a statement released by the company, GSK said:
“We announce the completion of the divestment of the GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Nigeria plc Drinks bottling and distribution business to Suntory Beverage & Food Nigeria Limited (SBFN). This follows the recent approvals obtained from the shareholders and the Nigeria Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC).
“Following this approval, GSK has transferred ownership of the Drinks business in Nigeria to Suntory Beverage & Food Nigeria Ltd effective 15t October 2016”.
“The new GSK Consumer Healthcare Company (retained business) consists of the Consumer Healthcare Wellness, Oral Healthcare and Nutrition categories and Pharmaceutical business, with a portfolio of leading healthcare brands. The retained brands include Sensodyne, Macleans, Panadol, Horlicks, Andrews Liver Salts, Voltaren, Otrivin and CAC 1000. GSK Nigeria will continue to be listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE)”.
“In the light of the successful completion of the divestment, the Register of Members and Register of Transfers of the Company will be closed from Monday 3rd October 2016 to Friday 7th October 2016, both days inclusive. Dividend warrants for the special dividend declared by the Company at its Extraordinary General Meeting of 4th July, 2016, subject to appropriate withholding tax deductions, will be posted on 12th October 2016 to holders of shares whose name appear in the Register of Members at close of business on 30th September 2016”, the company said.
With this news, the competition to control the drinks bottling and beverage distribution market is now going to gets tougher even as Nigeria’s economic recession is bound to taper consumer demands and consumption further.