Two former J&J executives plant a Seed in personal care aisles
NEW YORK —A desire to try to start a family and to support a healthy potential pregnancy prompted two former Johnson & Johnson executives to embark on a path of research that eventually would give birth to a new natural personal care line named Seed.
Graine de Vie was founded by Rebecca and Benjamin Gournay—who are partners in life and business—and in November 2009, the company launched its first 100% natural personal care brand called Seed. The collection is comprised of nourishing body lotions (suggested retail price of $8.99), moisturizing body soaps (SRP $4.49) and lathering hair shampoo bars (SRP $4.49). It was soft-launched in Whole Foods Market in late 2009, and also is sold on Amazon.com and Alice.com.
Now the company is looking to expand to mass-market retailers. The target: Mainstream consumers who are interested in buying natural personal care products but haven’t yet made the switch.
The Gournays are far from strangers to the mass market. Rebecca Gournay previously served as president of Gem Business Development, where she worked with startups in the natural sector, launching new products to market. Prior to Gem, she focused on sales and marketing at three Johnson & Johnson consumer products divisions. She also led the internal go-to-market strategies and planning at J&J consumer products division on several brands.
Benjamin Gournay was sales strategy director at Mars Snackfood. Before Mars Snackfood, he led business development for the Club Channel at Personal Products—a division of J&J—where he identified new growth opportunities and led new product-development initiatives.
Eager to leverage their entrepreneurial spirit and live a healthier lifestyle, the Gournays, who met while working at J&J, found their answer inside a grape seed. Each grape seed, a natural byproduct of the winemaking process, is rich in vitamin E, a potent mix of antioxidants and beneficial essential fatty acids—all known for healthy skin benefits.
In addition, Graine de Vie has signed the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics contract, indicating its commitment to never use ingredients that are known toxins. All of the Seed packaging is recyclable and/or biodegradable, and all products and packaging in the collection are made in the United States to cut down on its carbon footprint.
Going forward, the Gournays said they are looking to expand the line eventually, but noted that it was too early to disclose details. To promote the current Seed products at retail, the Gournays said they see great value in product sampling, in-store marketing, public relations efforts and social media.
Retail clinics: Improved care at a lower cost
WHAT IT MEANS AND WHY IT’S IMPORTANT Retail clinics. Save. Money. Without regard to who’s footing the bill exactly — healthcare payer or Jane Patient — retail clinics not only represent a significant cost savings across the board, but by siphoning nonemergency-yet-still-urgent cases out of the emergency rooms and doctors’ offices, retail clinics also can contribute to improved care across the healthcare continuum.
(THE NEWS: Study: Retail clinics save nonemergency patients money. For the full story, click here)
All told there were 119.2 million total ER visits in 2006, up 8.2% as compared with 2004, according to ACEP. Extrapolate that figure with WellPoint’s finding that 19.4% of those visits may be for nonemergencies across the entire nation, and the fuzzy math equates to an approximate 23.1 million non-emergency patients presenting across some 3,833 ERs. For whoever is paying for the cost of care, that’s an expenditure totaling $10.2 billion if every case were to present at an ER; as compared to $1.2 billion if every case were to present at a retail clinic. That’s the cost savings piece.
But cost savings aren’t the only benefit retail clinics afford the overall healthcare system — there’s a general improvement in care. According to the American College of Emergency Physicians, average waiting times for patients triaged with non-emergency ailments at emergency departments range between one and two hours, but only when the ER isn’t crowded. That’s like saying that bee stings don’t hurt, you know, except when they do.
Let’s face it, in a nation of 309 million and counting, there are simply not enough points of care, be it for an emergency or nonemergency situation. Taking nonemergency visits out of emergency rooms would likely improve the efficiency of care for more critical patients, as well as the experience of care for noncritical patients. That’s the improved care piece.
Improved care at a lower cost, that’s what retail clinics bring to the table.
Tide brings Loads of Hope to Dollar General
NASHVILLE Tide brought its mobile laundromat to a local Dollar General to benefit victims of the recent floods.
Tide’s Loads of Hope program visited a Nashville Dollar General May 12 to provide customers in the area with clean laundry. One truck and a fleet of vans house more than 32 energy-efficient washers and dryers that are capable of cleaning over 300 loads of laundry every day. Tide washs, dries and folds the clothes for these families for free.
The Loads of Hope program also benefited victims of Hurricanes Katrina and Ike, in addition to other natural disasters.