FDA approves opioid addiction treatment
RICHMOND, Va. — The Food and Drug Administration has approved a drug made by Reckitt Benckiser Pharmaceuticals for treating addiction to opioid drugs, the drug maker said.
Reckitt Benckiser announced the approval of Suboxone (buprenorphine and naloxone) sublingual film in the 4 mg and 12 mg strengths, used for the maintenance treatment of dependence on prescription opioid painkillers and heroin. Addiction to opioid drugs is a growing epidemic in the United States, the company said.
"Opioid dependence affects millions of Americans from all walks of life and socioeconomic levels, with the number growing each year," Reckitt Benckiser president for North America Richard Simkin said. "As the market leader and committed partner of care, we developed Suboxone sublingual film and the portfolio of dosage strengths to respond to critical public health issues: helping fulfill treatment needs with a product that is both effective and individualized and reducing the risk of pediatric exposure."
Church & Dwight acquires Vitafusion, L’il Critters line of gummy supplements
PRINCETON, N.J. – Church & Dwight on Monday became the latest large-scale CPG company to field a line of gummy vitamins with its acquisition of Avid Health for $650 million in cash.
“The acquisition of Avid’s gummy vitamins business represents a great addition to our existing portfolio and brings to our company a new growth platform in one of the fastest-growing segments of the attractive vitamin/mineral/supplement category," stated James Craigie, Church & Dwight chairman and CEO. "It is also consistent with our strategy of strengthening our business by adding No. 1 or No. 2 brands in areas of high growth potential.”
Avid’s net sales for the trailing 12 months through June 30, 2012 were approximately $230 million. Avid’s major brands are the adult gummy vitamins Vitafusion and the line of children’s gummy vitamins L’il Critters.
Gummy vitamins formulated for adults has been trending in the supplement space. Pharmavite earlier this year launched a line of gummy supplements that included a multivitamin, a fish oil, calcium, vitamin C, vitamin D, B-Complex and a CoQ10 formulation.
The Church & Dwight/Avid Health transaction, which is subject to regulatory approval and other customary conditions, is expected to close early in the fourth quarter, the company stated.
Bayer Aspirin emphasizes role of internal analgesic
Bayer has been stepping up its game behind its Bayer Advanced Aspirin brand in an attempt to recreate its brand identity from a healthy heart supplement for people who’ve had a heart attack to what Bayer Aspirin had been in its heyday: the internal analgesic of choice.
According to a Bayer survey, only 8% of respondents reported taking aspirin more often than other OTC pain relievers. Whatever they’re doing, it’s working. Bayer Advanced sales totaled $5 million, up 66.4% for the 12 weeks ended July 8, according to SymphonyIRI Group across food, drug and mass (minus Walmart).
In June, Bayer tapped New York Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia for a consumer challenge and sweepstakes as part of its Fast Relief Challenge, which asks consumers to try Bayer Advanced Aspirin for pain relief and provide feedback on how it worked for them. For every consumer rating received, Bayer will donate $1 to the American Red Cross, up to a total of $50,000.
“Outside of the United States, Bayer’s Aspirin is one of the top brands consumers turn to again and again for tough pain relief,” stated Reese Fitzpatrick, Bayer Aspirin director of marketing, when first announcing the Fast Relief Challenge in the spring. “In the United States, aspirin’s pain-relief heritage has to a large extent been forgotten, with many consumers only thinking of its heart benefits,” he said. “Bayer Advanced Aspirin was developed to provide the fast pain relief consumers want. We’re confident that consumers will see just how effective the product is when they try it.”
The article above is part of the DSN Category Review Series. For the complete Analgesics Sell-Through Report, including extensive charts, data and more analysis, click here.