Kenvue – J&J’s consumer health spinoff – signs on for Summit HQ

Jessica Perry//May 2, 2023

Summit East, Building L exterior in Summit.

Summit East, Building L exterior in Summit.

Kenvue – J&J’s consumer health spinoff – signs on for Summit HQ

Jessica Perry//May 2, 2023

In an April 24 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Kenvue said it signed a lease four days earlier for what will serve as the Johnson & Johnson spinoff’s new global headquarters. 

In its S-1 filing, Kenvue said it entered a long-term lease for 290,000 square feet of space “for a newly renovated office building and a newly constructed R&D building” in the Union County municipality. On May 1, Onyx Equities LLC confirmed its 46-acre Summit East campus as that location.

Kenvue’s corporate personnel will be housed at the property along with laboratory space that will principally support research and development. With an initial term of 15 years, according to the filing, the expected lease expense is approximately $10 million per year.  

Last May, JLL was tapped to market Summit East – described then as a “blank canvas” – on behalf of Woodbridge-based Onyx Equities. Located at 80-90 Morris Turnpike, the gated, 11-building, 640,000-square-foot office complex offers access to downtown Summit as well as convenient commuter options. 

In its statement, Onyx Equities said initial development at the property – the former home of Celgene Corp. – will include 191,000 square feet of office space and new construction of a 100,000-square-foot R&D building, featuring state-of-the-art laboratories and workspaces.

‘A new era’

The Merck site in Kenilworth clocks in at 108 acres with nearly 2 million square feet.

Onyx added another historic pharmaceutical site earlier in 2023, acquiring the nearly 2 million-square-foot, 108-acre former Merck HQ in Kenilworth in a joint venture with Machine Investment Group LP.
Read more here.

“Johnson & Johnson’s decision to locate its new Kenvue Consumer Health division at our Summit East campus affirms New Jersey’s continued leadership in the Life Science industry and validates our strategy of acquiring and transforming historic pharma campuses for a new era,” Onyx said in a statement.

“Summit is at the epicenter of an educated biomedical workforce, lending itself to the next generation of consumer products in an area’s already thriving innovation hub and with a great legacy of leadership,” the statement continued.

The relocation of the office component is expected to begin in 2025 and continue through the next year for occupancy of the new R&D building, according to Kenvue’s SEC filing. Until that time, the company will continue to operate from its interim headquarters in Skillman, located at 199 Grandview Road. 

It was not immediately clear how many employees would be based in Summit. A company representative said that Kenvue was unable to provide additional information at this time, citing securities laws.

Beyond the Summit lease, the company listed 11 principal properties – representing a cumulative 6.75 million square feet – in the April 24 filing that it will own following its separation from J&J, including four in the U.S.:

Location  Principal segment  Use  Approximate size 
Skillman, N.J.  Skin Health and Beauty (R&D), Essential Health (R&D)  Interim corporate headquarters; R&D  740,000 square feet 
Fort Washington, Pa.  Self Care  Manufacturing  800,000 square feet 
Las Piedras, Puerto Rico   Self Care   Manufacturing  740,000 square feet 
Lititz, Pa.  Skin Health and Beauty, Essential Health   Manufacturing  550,000 square feet 


The remaining principal locations are in São José dos Campos, Brazil; Val-de-Reuil, France; Cali, Colombia; Pomezia, Italy; Bangkok, Thailand; Shanghai, China; and Helsingborg, Sweden. 

Following its separation from J&J, Kenvue said in its filing it expects to own, lease or otherwise control rights to use approximately 180 facilities—46 owned and 134 leased or otherwise. That space – spanning administrative offices, R&D, manufacturing, warehousing, distribution and more – represents approximately 15.4 million square feet total, with about 10.8 million square feet owned and 4.6 million leased or otherwise.

Name recognition

Kenvue is expected to make its arrival this year. The consumer health company includes an iconic portfolio of products, such as: Aveeno, Neutrogena, Band-Aid, Tylenol, Johnson’s and Listerine. According to the company, its brands are used by approximately 1.2 billion people.  

“Through an agile structure focused on the ability to respond quickly to changes in market and consumer dynamics, we operate our organization based on three main agility principles: (1) consumer and customer obsession, (2) small, cross-functional empowered and accountable teams and (3) servant and inclusive leadership,” the SEC filing said. 

As of the start of 2023, Kevnue had approximately 22,200 employees, 5,400 of whom are located in North America.  

The S-1 also revealed the individuals expected to lead the company upon completion of the IPO, joining Thibaut Mongon, CEO and director, and Paul Ruh, chief financial officer, whose appointments were previously announced. Those individuals – all of whom come from the J&J Consumer Health team – are: 

  • Luani Alvarado – chief people officer 
  • Carlton Lawson group president, Europe, Middle East and Africa 
  • Donna Lorenson – chief corporate affairs officer 
  • Jan Meurer – chief growth officer 
  • Matthew Orlando – general counsel 
  • Meredith (Meri) Stevens – chief operations officer 
  • Bernardo Tavares – chief technology & data officer 
  • Caroline Tillett – chief scientific officer 
  • Kathleen Widmer – group president, North America and Latin America 
  • Ellie Bing Xie – group president, Asia Pacific 


The IPO will make available 151.2 million shares of common stock with an estimated price per share of between $20-$23, according to Kenvue’s filing. The company estimates net proceeds from the sale will total approximately $3.15 million. That will be paid to Johnson & Johnson, which will own 91.9% of the shares following the completed IPO.

The stock will trade on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “KVUE.” 

In 2022, the Consumer Health business generated $14.95 billion in sales for J&J, according to the company’s year-end results. In the first quarter of 2023, the company reported that worldwide adjusted operational sales were up by 11.3%, driven largely by over-the-counter (OTC) products. 

In a statement, New Jersey Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Tom Bracken praised Kenvue’s decision to set up in Summit—highlighting the fact that the company chose to stay in New Jersey – paying tribute to J&J’s “long, storied history” here – and doing so without state tax breaks.

“The company received no state tax incentives when making this decision. Therefore, this is another recent example of a company looking at all New Jersey has to offer its employees and operations and choosing the Garden State over other states due to our superior demographics, our enormous array of assets and our ideal location,” Bracken said. “Additionally, we wish Kenvue, a soon to be Fortune 100 company, the all the best as it delivers iconic brands to consumers in New Jersey and the rest of the world. This is a win for our economy and all New Jerseyans.”