UPDATE 2-Glaxo buys protein-drinks firm Maxinutrition

* Glaxo buys firm for 162 million pounds cash

* Protein products complement Lucozade, Horlicks franchises

* Glaxo CEO sees new opportunities from broadening business

(Adds comments from Glaxo CEO)

By Paul Sandle

LONDON, Dec 13 (BestGrowthStock) – GlaxoSmithKline (GSK.L: ) is buying
protein drinks firm Maxinutrition for 162 million pounds ($256
million) from its private-equity owners to complement its
Lucozade sports drinks and Horlicks franchises.

Glaxo Chief Executive Andrew Witty said the deal, which is
priced at 4.5 times last year’s sales, would give the drugmaker
a broad range of nutritional drink products as it seeks to build
up its consumer healthcare business.

“It fits beautifully with the Lucozade business,” Witty told
Reuters in an interview.

“The more subtle part is that if you think about GSK now, we
have a carbohydrates nutrition business with Lucozade, we have a
calcium micronutrients business which is Horlicks, and now we
have a protein nutritional business.”

Glaxo said on Monday it was buying the company from Darwin
Private Equity for 162 million pounds in cash, including the
repayment of outstanding debt.

British-based Maxinutrition is Europe’s leading sports
nutrition company by market share, with a line-up of products
that includes Maximuscle for weight-trainers, as well as
Maxifuel and Maxitone.

It recorded sales of about 36 million pounds in the year to
end-April 2010 and has delivered annual sales growth of
approximately 21 percent over the last 3 years.

Witty said the broad base in three different types of
nutritional healthcare products could allow Glaxo to contemplate
a range of innovations in future.

“You could then imagine a whole series of new products at
all levels of the system — you could imagine elite sports
products, you could imagine nutrition for the elderly, and you
could also imagine daily nutritional supplements for people in
Africa,” he said.

The deal is subject to approval from Britain’s Office of
Fair Trading.
(Additional reporting by Ben Hirschler and Kate Kelland;
Editing by Hans Peters)
($1=.6335 Pound)

UPDATE 2-Glaxo buys protein-drinks firm Maxinutrition