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Iconic brands stage a comeback

BY Michael Johnsen

There are a number of growth drivers across the digestives space, starting with the biggest proton-pump inhibitor to make its way from behind the pharmacy bench to over-the-counter aisles since the original “Purple Pill” was switched in 2003. Once Procter & Gamble switched Prilosec OTC, it became one of the best-selling nonprescription medicines out of all categories. And now that Pfizer is bringing to OTC the $6 billion in prescription business tied to what is now known as the “Purple Pill,” Nexium, there’s no reason to think the latest PPI may soon stake its claim as one of the largest OTC brands.

(For the complete category review, including data, click here.)

But there are other iconic digestive brands making a resurgence in the space. Bayer has boosted sales of Alka Seltzer to $16 million, up 580.5%, with the introduction of Alka Seltzer Fruit Chews. Similarly, the company has increased sales of its Phillips Fiber Good brand with the introduction of a gummy line with sales of $6.3 million, up 2,603.1%.

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WSJ: Winn-Dixie/Bi-Lo won’t get IPO

BY Ryan Chavis

NEW YORK — Southeastern Grocers, the company behind supermarket chains Winn-Dixie and Bi-Lo, will not pursue an initial public offering, according to a report from the Wall Street Journal.

Southeastern Grocers filed for an IPO in September 2013. The company expanded in 2011 after it agreed to make Winn-Dixie stores private in a deal close to $560 million. Southeastern reported a profit of $103 million for fiscal 2012, with sales of $8.6 billion.

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Scott brand celebrates national debut of tube-free tissue

BY Ryan Chavis

DALLAS — Scott, a brand from Kimberly-Clark, announced the national release of Scott Natural Tube-Free bath tissue. The tubeless tissue eliminates the cardboard tube in the center and helps cut down on the 17 billion toilet paper tubes thrown out each year.

The brand played up that figure by today by unveiling a replica of the Empire State Building in New York City's Flatiron plaza: 17 billion discarded tubes could fill the Empire State Building — twice!

"Kimberly-Clark is thrilled to be able to release Scott Naturals Tube-Free bath tissue nationally, providing consumers across the country with a product that contributes to a better, cleaner world, without sacrificing quality," said Jared Mackrory, brand manager for Scott Brand. "Imagining the environmental impact of 17 billion tubes — enough to fill the Empire State Building twice — is hard to do. That's why we brought the concept to life by creating a 30-ft. replica in the middle of Manhattan."

The product's distribution has been limited to northeastern markets since 2010, but can now be purchased at Walmart stores nationwide, as well as at select retailers. The packaging of all Scott Naturals products contains at least 20% recycled content, according to the brand.

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