HEALTH

U.K.’s CMA still weighing in on RB acquisition of K-Y

BY Michael Johnsen

LONDON – The United Kingdom's Competition and Markets Authority may put a kink into Reckitt Benckiser's acquisition of the K-Y personal lubricant brand from Johnson & Johnson, at least in the U.K., as the regulatory authority on Friday provisionally found that Reckitt Benckiser’s anticipated acquisition of the K-Y brand could lead to higher prices for personal lubricants.
 
The deal was initially announced in March, 2014, and was expected to give Reckitt Benckiser a strong brand positioning on shelf with its Durex intimacy health portfolio and the K-Y personal lubricants.  In the U.S., sales of K-Y personal lubricants dominate the category with six SKUs ranking in top 10 brand sales. Across total U.S. multi-outlet, 2014 sales of personal lubricants totaled $215.1 million, up 2.1%, according to IRI. 
 
The deal had been completed in the North America markets by July, 2014.
 
The Competition and Markets Authority had referred the case for a phase 2 investigation in January 2015 and the inquiry group of independent CMA panel members looking at the merger has examined the companies’ internal documents, the views of competitors and retailers, sales and price data and the results of a customer survey.
 
"After considering the full range of this evidence, the group provisionally believes that on balance the merger could lead to a substantial reduction in competition, possibly through higher prices, making customers buying these products in grocery retailers and national pharmacy chains worse off," CMA stated. "K-Y and Durex hold almost three quarters of the market share in supermarkets and national pharmacies, where the majority of customers buy these products. Whilst customers can choose from a wide range of products and suppliers in specialist shops or when buying online, there is little evidence that these other outlets will act as a brake on any price rises in national chains, and smaller suppliers have historically had little success getting access to the shelves in these larger shops."
 
The CMA is inviting responses to these provisional findings and will continue to assess all the evidence before the agnecy makes its final decision.
 
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North America will dominate $52.6 billion sports-nutrition market in 2020

BY Michael Johnsen

ALBANY, N.Y. — Sales of sports nutrition products are expected to reach $52.6 billion worldwide in 2020, building from a base of $29.7 billion in 2013 and representing a compound annual growth rate of 8.5% from 2014 to 2020, according to a new market report published Thursday by Transparency Market Research. 
 
According to the report, “Sports Nutrition Products Market – Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends and Forecast, 2014 – 2020,” regular consumers are shifting toward sports nutrition products to fortify their health and to remain active in their busy lives. These products are manufactured with ingredients like creatine, linoleic acid, caffeine and taurine. Increasing health awareness among consumers, rapid urbanization and rise in disposable income are major factors driving the demand for sports nutrition products, Transparency Market Research noted. 
 
North America held the largest market share in the sports nutrition segment and is expected to maintain that position through 2020. However, Asia Pacific is the fastest growing market for sports nutrition products. In addition to the Asia Pacific, Brazil, India and Argentina are some of the major markets in which demand for sports nutrition producst is escalating. 
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Centrum MultiGummies set to shake up gummy vitamin sets

BY Michael Johnsen

MADISON, N.J. — Pfizer Consumer Healthcare on Thursday announced the launch of Centrum MultiGummies, adding a leading multivitamin brand to the number of adult gummy vitamin options on the shelf. Pfizer's Centrum Silver brand is the No. 1 multivitamin in the market across total U.S. multi-outlets, with $190.6 million in sales for the 52 weeks ended April 19, according to IRI data. 
 
“We continue to evolve the Centrum product line to reflect consumers’ varying needs and preferences. In our research, consumers said they wanted a more enjoyable way to get essential vitamins and minerals daily, which is why we are pleased to offer the addition of Centrum MultiGummies,” said Chris Lynch, senior product manager for Centrum. “Now consumers can get the nutrients they need from the brand they know and trust, in a great tasting gummy form.”
 
“According to nutritional health data, nine out of 10 Americans are not getting enough of key essential nutrients such as Vitamins D and E,” stated Elizabeth Ward, registered dietitian and nutrition health expert. “A new multivitamin formula that is easy to take allows consumers to get key vitamins and minerals that are so important to supporting nutritional health.”
 
Centrum MultiGummies is the latest addition to Centrum’s multivitamin product line. Centrum Multivitamins offers one of the most comprehensive lines of product forms, including tablet, chewable, liquid forms and now gummies. Centrum MultiGummies include key nutrients such as Vitamins D, B12 and E, and are available in natural flavors (berry, cherry, orange), are gluten-free, use only natural colorants and do not contain any artificial sweeteners.
 
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