GSK is a top 10 FTSE100 healthcare business with a market capitalisation of nearly £80bn. It has a portfolio of instantly recognisable consumer healthcare brands includiong Panadol, Aquafresh, Sensodyne, Horlicks and Maximuscle. Their skincare business is worth c£600m.
GSK is seeking to create a more balanced business and product portfolio, capable of delivering sustainable sales and earnings growth and improved returns to shareholders. This is centred on their three business areas of Pharmaceuticals, Vaccines and Consumer Healthcare. The latter segment, Consumer Healthcare, is being grown assertively from a lower start-point, which has facilitated some knowledge gaps within their leadership. The business concluded that they needed to secure an external leader for their skincare business unit, likely to come from a leading branded organisation from the beauty category.
Drayton Partners Approach
It was quickly established that even within a global context there were very few individuals with the requisite skills and deep category experience. These individuals were almost exclusively residing within the largest, multi-national beauty and skincare businesses that dominate the category.
Drayton worked as a close partner to GSK's internal talent function. Following an extensive search period one individual shone out as the outstanding and most relevant candidate. They offered a unique mix of deep technical expertise, a global market understanding and a tight 'cultural fit' with the GSK Consumer Healthcare leadership group. Drayton Partners worked closely with GSK to ensure that this candidate remained engaged throughout an extensive assessment and 'referencing' period.
The business secured a leader who was able to facilitate a step-change in GSK's skincare branding proposition, drove swifter market momentum and transplanted deep category knowledge in to the business unit.