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November 2004 OTC Market Highlights
in association with OTC Bulletin

  • Dutch OTC New Proposed Classifications – Dutch health Minister Hans Hoogervordt announced to parliament at the end of October that his plans allowing OTCs to be sold in grocery outlets would mean re-establishing a pharmacy only classification for some OTC medicines including new Rx to OTC switches in Holland. Up until now all OTC medicines are available in licensed drugstores which account for 79.6% of OTC medicine sales.Lichtwer Pharma – The troubled German plant based medicines company is handing over its German OTC medicines portfolio to Klosterfrau in a bid to reduce costs following loss of business due to the exclusion of most non-prescription from reimbursement in Germany since early in 2004.Celesio – Plans to buy Sanalog the pre-wholesaling arm of Sanacorp. This would strengthen Celesio’s position in this growing sector of the supply chain. Sanalog has a turnover of €10.5 million but produces an operating profit of just €0.3 million.Novartis – Novartis global OTC consumer healthcare sales increased 8% to US$ 478 millions in its third quarter. This resulted in a corresponding increase of 28% in operating income to US$ 105 millions. Overall the company achieved a 14% increase in sales to US$ 7,057 millions in its third quarter with operating income of US$ 1,717 millions a growth of 17%.J&J McNeil – Overall the company achieved a 10.5% increase in sales to US$ 11,553 millions in its third quarter. Consumer global sales increased 9.9% to US$ 2024 millions.Stada – The German OTC company bought 68 brands for €13.8 million in Italy from Boniscontro and Gazzone and in another deal from Pulitzer.Omega – The rapidly growing Belgian OTC, dental and pharmacy supply business added 24% to its sales in its third quarter to achieve €201.6 million.Wyeth – Global OTC sales took a bath at US$ 651 millions in its third quarter, a 1% decline over the same period in 2003. Overall the company achieved a negative 1.5% growth in sales to US$ 4,472 millions in its third quarter.Roche – Consumer sales for the first nine months of 2004 were up just 1.5% to €860 million. The consumer business is expected to be acquired by Bayer at the end of the year.Pfizer – Overall the company achieved a 4% increase in sales to US$ 12,831millions in its third quarter. Consumer sales increased 10% to US$ 851 millions.

    DocMorris – Investment group Hg Capital is acquiring a 46% stake in Europe’s largest Internet pharmacy. The Dutch based company is expected to turn in €140 million in sales this year mostly from the German market. Other investors are Dr Neuhaus Techno and 3i.Schering-Plough – Global OTC sales scraped a 1% growth to US$ 150 millions in its third quarter. Overall the company achieved a negative 1% growth in sales to US$ 1,978 millions in its third quarter.Arkopharma – Total business grew 13.9% in its third quarter with sales of €196 million.German OTC Advertising falls in August and September 2004 – After an initial rise in expenditure earlier in the year expenditure slumped 17.25% and 10.5% respectively in August and September compared to the same periods in 2003. August expenditure was €18.7million and September’s was €21.5 million. Most of the losses were attributed to a reduction in TV advertising.James Dudley Management’s electronic data service medotceurope went online in October 2004. The site provides OTC medicine, dietary supplement and distribution channel information as market data, market reports, country market profiles and marketing strategy papers for managers and advertising agencies. Take a moment to visit this unique web site to find out more.