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Woodford favourite invests £500m in UK after Budget

Pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline has unveiled a series of investments worth more than £500m in the UK after yesterday’s Budget confirmed a ‘patent box’.

GSK, which is owned by a number of asset managers including Invesco Perpetual’s Neil Woodford and M&G’s Tom Dobell, will invest £350m in a new biopharmaceutical manufacturing facility at Ulverston in Cumbria.

An investment of more than £100m across the firm’s two manufacturing sites in Scotland is also planned, while a total of £80m will be channelled towards projects in Hertfordshire and County Durham.

The news follows yesterday’s announcement by chancellor George Osborne that the level of corporation tax applied to income derived from patents will be lowered. Osborne said he wants to make the UK “one of the most attractive places in the world to invent new medicines”.

Andrew Witty, chief executive of GSK, says: “The introduction of the patent box has transformed the way in which we view the UK as a location for new investments, ensuring that the medicines of the future will not only be discovered, but can also continue to be made here in Britain.”

GSK is the second largest holding of Woodford’s £11.5 billion Invesco Perpetual high income fund, where it makes up 7.86 per cent* of the portfolio, and the largest holding of his £9 billion Invesco Perpetual income fund, where it has a 7.92 per cent* weighting.

The stock is also owned by Dobell’s £8.1 billion M&G recovery fund*, Iain Stewart’s £5.4 billion Newton real return fund* and Adrian Frost’s £4.1 billion Artemis income fund*.

* as of February 29

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