This week’s lacklustre results will strengthen boss Emma Walmsley’s case for reform – but also inspire her critics
When the American hedge fund Elliott Management took a sizeable stake in GlaxoSmithKline this month, the drugmaker’s shares jumped 5% on speculation of a possible shake-up at the company.
GSK’s chief executive, Emma Walmsley, will face questions over the future of the business, as well as its performance, when she unveils first-quarter results on Wednesday, followed by the annual meeting a week later. Analysts are forecasting a 14% drop in revenues to £7.8bn and a 10% decline in pre-tax profit to £1.7bn in what looks to be the weakest quarter of the year. This reflects tougher year-on-year comparisons (due to stockpiling of many products at the start of the pandemic), as well as rising research and development costs.
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