Federal Contractor Misconduct Database (FCMD)

The federal government routinely awards contracts to companies with histories of misconduct, including contract fraud and other violations. POGO believes that providing this website will help to improve contracting decisions and increase public knowledge of how the government spends billions of taxpayer dollars each year. Read more…

Misleading Marketing of Pain Relief Products in Australia

The Federal Court of Australia accepted admissions by GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare Australia Pty Ltd and Novartis Consumer Health Australasia Pty Ltd that they made false or misleading representations in the marketing of Voltaren Osteo Gel and Voltaren Emulgel pain relief products. GSK and Novartis admitted that from January 2012 to March 2017 they marketed Osteo Gel as being specifically formulated and more effective than Emulgel in treating osteoarthritis related pain and inflammation. In fact, Osteo Gel and Emulgel products are essentially the same. An investigation by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) found that, despite having the same active ingredients, Osteo Gel was often sold at a significantly higher retail price than Emulgel. A hearing will be held at a later date to determine penalties. (GSK acquired Novartis’ portfolio of Voltaren products in March 2016 and has been responsible for marketing and selling Voltaren products since that time.)

Misconduct Type
Enforcement Agency
Contracting Party
Court Type
Date of Settlement Announcement
Contractors Involved Penalty
GlaxoSmithKline $0
Novartis AG $0
Further Information Released
ACCC Press Release (May 2019) 5/17/2019
ACCC Press Release (Dec. 2017) 12/6/2017

Federal Contractor Misconduct Database