China scandal will hit business, warns GSK chief

Suzie Neuwirth

GLAXOSMITHKLINE’S business will inevitably be impacted by the Chinese bribery allegations, the pharmaceuticals firm’s chief executive said today.

Sir Andrew Whitty told reporters at the second-quarter results presentation that GSK plans to commission an independent review into the scandal, adding that he was ready to go to China “when it is the right moment”.

He said that head office had no knowledge of the alleged bribery and that he was “personally very disappointed” with the “shameful allegations” which had been made.

He mooted the idea of a tiered pricing approach and said GSK would be open to changing its business model in China.

Whitty refused to say whether he would give up his bonus in light of the scandal.

In the British firm’s second quarter results, group turnover grew by two per cent while earnings per share edged up one per cent.