HEALTH

GMDC ups research maven to VP insights and communications

BY Michael Johnsen

The Global Market Development Center on Tuesday promoted Mark Mechelse to vice president, insights and communications. Mechelse, who joined GMDC in 2011 as director of research, industry insights and communications, is charged with advancing the association’s mission of advocating for the general merchandise and health, beauty and wellness categories on behalf of members.

“Mark has worked tirelessly to grow the awareness of GMDC within the industry and his efforts have not gone unnoticed,” Patrick Spear, GMDC president and CEO, said. “The initiatives he has launched have played a significant role in positioning the organization and its members as powerful innovators and thought leaders in the marketplace.”

Those initiatives include leading the association’s Education Leadership Council, which drives an essential part of GMDC’s mission by providing strategic direction for retail insights. Within this role, Mechelse works with members to produce breakthrough industry research, provide unique perspectives and consumer driven “next practices” designed to help members interpret research and trends, and develop strategies for driving new business.

Mechelse has also been instrumental in advancing the Colorado Springs, Colo.-based association’s Retail Tomorrow initiative to leverage innovation in the marketplace through development and advancement of unique and first-mover products, services and technologies. “Consumers demand ideas, products, services and technologies that are truly revolutionary,” Spear said. “While many companies, and even other associations, are talking about innovation, Retail Tomorrow delivers these opportunities to our members.”

Launched in May 2016, Retail Tomorrow is opening pathways of discovery for provocative, product-and process-changing solutions in the marketplace.

Mechelse began his career in marketing and advertising with the launch of a private ad agency in Toronto, Ontario that focused on brand invention for localized companies and corporate sponsorship in the motorsports industry. He later joined the social expressions trade, serving as creative and marketing communications director of Paramount Cards/Image Craft, the third largest greeting card company in the world. Mechelse also led custom product and private label development teams for AIM Global of Nashville, Tenn., producing successful consumer offerings for Costco, QVC, Barnes & Noble, Vera Bradley, Thomas Nelson and Dave Ramsey.

 

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HEALTH

Strides Shasun launches popular store brand H2 blocker

BY Michael Johnsen

Strides Shasun on Monday introduced its Ranitidine Tablets, USP, 150 mg, the generic equivalent to the nonprescription Zantac digestive brand, to the U.S. marketplace. Strides Shasun already has a prescription-only rantidine product on the market in both 150 mg and 300 mg strengths.

Citing IRI data, Bangalore, India-based Strides Shasun reported Sanofi’s Zantac generated some $200 million in sales.

This marks the first product approval to stem from the 50/50 joint venture with Vivimed Labs. The product will be backward integrated and will be manufactured at the JV’s oral dosage facility in Chennai, India. Strides will have exclusive marketing rights for the product in the U.S. and will begin launching the product into the market immediately.

Ranitidine belongs to a class of drugs known as H2 histamine blockers. It is used to treat peptic ulcers of the stomach and intestines and gastroesophageal reflux and heartburn related to indigestion.

Strides Shasun has 82 cumulative ANDA filings before the Food and Drug Administration, of which 50 have been approved and 32 are pending approval, the company reported.

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EZC Pak-D named ‘Buyers Choice’ at ECRM cough-cold event

BY Michael Johnsen

The PPC Group won the ECRM/Drug Store News Buyers Choice award for the second straight year with its new EZC Pak-D immune support product during ECRM’s recent Cough/Cold, Analgesics & Allergy EPPS. Unipharma was a finalist with its DrKids Himasal Babies natural saline drops.

“Retail buyers attend ECRM’s sessions looking for innovative products like these to truly differentiate their assortments,” Judy Ard, vice president healthcare for ECRM, said. “It’s clear from the two selected winners that these buyers are seeking more natural solutions to consumers’ wellness needs.”

The two companies were selected from dozens of entries in the award program, samples of which were displayed in the ECRM hospitality area during the EPPS meetings. Buyers cast their votes based on product innovation and packaging.

Los Angeles-based PPC Group is a physician-led health products company focused on solving complex health problems, with a primary focus on inflammation, wound healing and infectious disease management.

The EZC Pak-D is a brand extension of the company’s base SKU offering EZC Pak, a physician-formulated immune support pack designed to reduce the overuse of antibiotics during cold and flu season, with the “D” referring to vitamin D. According to a WebMD study cited by the company, 95% of U.S. prescribers admit to writing antibiotics when unclear of their need, and patient expectation the No. 1 reason for this practice, which has contributed to rising antibiotic resistance. The EZC Pak-D is designed as a tool to address this problem with clinically formulated immune support in a packaging design developed to maintain patient compliance and satisfaction.

PPC Group won the Buyers Choice award last year for its original EZC-Pak last year.

Unipharma, based out of Tamarac, Fla., was established as a purpose-built blow-fill-seal and conventional fill manufacturing facility designed with liquid and semi-liquid Rx, OTC and Nutraceutical product capabilities. It specializes in single-dose filling technologies such as BFS, fill-seal and liquid stickpack, as well as high speed conventional fill.

The company’s DrKids Himasal Babies are hygienic and natural saline drops made with Himalayan Salt to moisturize and soothe a baby’s airways. According to the company, Himalayan salt is a naturally occurring salt sourced from the deepest salt mines in the world and is free of many toxins and pollutants found in other forms of salt. It’s available in 30 premeasured single doses and is developed to be easy to use, practical and recyclable.

 

 

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