Case | HBS Case Collection | June 2012

GlaxoSmithKline in Brazil: Public-Private Vaccine Partnerships

by Arthur A. Daemmrich and Ian McKown Cornell

Abstract

Three years into a major public-private partnership between GlaxoSmithKline and Fiocuz, Brazil's principal health institute, the company assesses technology transfer and joint research under the agreement. GSK was selling its Synflorix vaccine (against pediatric pneumonia) at fixed prices even as it transferred technology and know-how to Brazil for eventual domestic production. At the same time, GSK was co-sponsoring research into a new vaccine for Dengue fever with the Brazilian government. GSK's management must consider whether the PPP provides strategic advantage to its consumer healthcare businesses in Brazil and to accesss other emerging markets as well as the risks posed by the aggressive product obsolescence built into the technology transfer agreement.

Keywords: Public-Private Partnerships; Business and Government Relations; Foreign Direct Investment; Health Care and Treatment; Globalized Firms and Management; Biotechnology Industry; Pharmaceutical Industry; Brazil;

Citation:

Daemmrich, Arthur A., and Ian McKown Cornell. "GlaxoSmithKline in Brazil: Public-Private Vaccine Partnerships." Harvard Business School Case 712-049, June 2012.