GSK boss Emma Walmsley steels for survival fight with Elliott

Controversial GlaxoSmithKline boss Emma Walmsley expected to bolster her defense against Elliott as pharmaceutical giant improves earnings

Controversial GlaxoSmithKline chief Emma Walmsley is expected to bolster her defense against corporate raider Elliott this week as the pharmaceutical giant improves earnings.

The Mail on Sunday understands that Walmsley has met a string of major investors since she outlined her vision for the company’s future last month.

Under pressure: company has been shocked since US activist investor took multibillion-pound stake

She is expected to tell the city that a number of investors have advised her to stick to her current strategy and not be distracted by Elliott’s calls for a stir.

The company has been shocked since the American activist investor took a multi-billion-pound stake.

GSK plans to split in half next year by splitting its consumer arm.

Last week, the head of consumer health care appointed Brian McNamara to lead it after a hiring process that involved two headhunters.

Elliott wants a similar process for the remaining biopharma business and effectively demands that Walmsley reapply for her own job.

The company’s £71bn share has risen 10 per cent since Elliott’s stake emerged in April, closing at £14.16 on Friday.