GSK planning off-grid move for savings

Probing every possible cost-savings opportunity, GlaxoSmithKline ($GSK) is considering removing its factories from the local power grid to supply its own energy more cheaply. And CEO Andrew Witty (photo) is looking forward to the cooperation of local and national governments.

Citing the "narrowing cost differential between Ireland, Britain and places like India," Witty, as quoted in The Irish Times, says that it's making more and more sense to bring manufacturing back to the U.K.

Witty said in the interview with the Times he expects the GSK energy bill to rise 20% to 30% next year. "If energy is going to go up 30% every year, then forget it, we're out of the game," he explained.

GSK has been one of the most active of Big Pharma companies when it comes to green initiatives, and it made our list of the 12 greenest companies in biopharma. The company is a proponent of wind farms, which has earned it some local controversy and resistance lately.

Witty also mentioned off-grid plants as "real opportunities for us to lock in long-term competitiveness for Ireland."

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