HEALTH

Health Enterprises rolls out new molded earplugs

BY Michael Johnsen

NORTH ATTLEBORO, Mass. Health Enterprises recently announced its latest innovation for hearing protection — the Pro-Fit and Swim-Fit custom molded earplugs.

Both the Pro-Fit and Swim-Fit earplugs allow consumers to form a custom-molded earplug to fit the unique contour of their ear within 10 minutes. “Unlike traditional foam and silicone earplugs which are disposable and one-size-fits-all, these custom molded earplugs deliver a personalized fit for maximum comfort and effectiveness,” stated Brendan Leonard, Health Enterprises president. “Since these plugs can be used daily for up to 6-months, consumers can realize substantial savings with the Pro-Fit and Swim-Fit earplugs.”

The Pro-Fit earplug is ideal for sleep, study, work and loud events with a 29 noise reduction rating. The Swim-Fit helps seal out water to help prevent Swimmer’s Ear.

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Vitamin Shoppe initiates public offering

BY Michael Johnsen

NORTH BERGEN, N.J. Perhaps some indication as to the promise of dietary supplements today, specialty retailer Vitamin Shoppe on Wednesday initiated a public offering with 7.7 million shares of common stock at $17.

Trading under the symbol VSI on the New York Stock Exchange, shares were trading at $18.28 by mid-morning Wednesday. Vitamin Shoppe intends to use the net proceeds of approximately $121.2 million from the offering for the pro rata redemption of approximately $72.5 million of its outstanding preferred stock, the repurchase of approximately $45.2 million in aggregate principal amount of its outstanding senior secured notes, and the payment of offering-related expenses.

J.P.Morgan, BofA Merrill Lynch and Barclays Capital are acting as joint book-running managers for the offering. Piper Jaffray, Robert W. Baird & Co. and Stifel Nicolaus are the co-managers of the offering.

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Hyland’s gets ‘Wild’

BY Michael Johnsen

LOS ANGELES Hyland’s on Thursday announced that it has signed an agreement with Wild Child, a Western Australia-based natural healthcare products company, for exclusive North American use of the Wild Child brand, and distribution of its pediculicide brands Quit Nits kit and Quit Nits preventative spray.

“At Hyland’s, we are committed to providing our consumers and their families with the safest, most effective natural health care products possible,” stated J.P. Borneman, Hyland’s chairman and CEO. “This partnership with Wild Child, a company that shares our vision, expands our offerings to now include a natural solution to a very common childhood condition, head lice.”

The Quit Nits offerings will retain the Wild Child branding, though the Hyland’s oval will be added to the distribution section of the drug facts label, a factor that should help bring loyal Hyland’s users to the brand. Quit Nits is currently distributed through more than 6,500 retail doors and additional distribution is pending, Borneman told Drug Store News.

“We are very pleased to be working with [Wild Child founder] Leanne Preston and Wild Child director and pharmaceutical chemist, John Found,” Borneman said. “We believe this is just the beginning of a long-term partnership that will benefit both of our companies and more importantly, our consumers.”

The two greatest synergies realized from this pairing will be distribution and marketing, Borneman noted. Quit Nits will now be offered as part of Hyland’s extensive portfolio of homeopathic remedies, he said. Similarly, Hyland’s will include Quit Nits in its marketing spend.

The Quit Nits kit contains two tubes of advance lice treatment cream and one everyday preventative spray. The advance lice treatment cream eliminates head lice and their eggs, or nits, in two easy steps.

And the Quit Nits everyday preventative spray is a topical spray that prevents lice infestation both prior to exposure as a proactive measure and after infestation to avoid reoccurrence.

Both products are formulated with certified natural active ingredients originating in the Australian outback, with no chemical pesticides. Traditional over-the-counter medicines for head lice include chemical insecticides that kill lice but are not able to kill their nits, which then require an additional tedious comb-out process.

According to a 2000 Lancet article, there is estimated between 6 million and 12 million cases of head lice annually in the United States. Of these, the highest prevalence is among pre-school and elementary school children, ages 3 to 12 years.

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