Health Mart expands into private-label allergy offerings for its independent base
SAN FRANCISCO — With allergy season in full swing, Health Mart, a network of more than 2,900 independently owned pharmacies, on Monday announced the expansion of its Health Mart private-label line of over-the-counter healthcare products with the introduction of upper respiratory products.
“Pharmacists play a key role in helping consumers make appropriate purchase decisions about products for respiratory issues associated with allergies, colds and the flu," stated Matt Lowe, VP retail marketing for McKesson, which owns Health Mart. "Even with OTC products, consumers regularly seek advice from their pharmacist on drug interactions and to discuss symptoms, with nearly [one-third] of patients asking for a specific product recommendation,” he said. “As the largest OTC category, it was very important to offer high-quality upper respiratory products that continue to reinforce the value and personalized care our customers have come to expect from their trusted Health Mart pharmacist.”
Designed to help community pharmacies build closer consumer relationships and raise awareness of the pharmacist’s role as a community healthcare provider, the Health Mart private label was launched in November 2011 with diabetes care products. Additional healthcare categories will continue to be added throughout 2012.
According to the Nielsen, upper respiratory products represent a $4 billion category and have grown more than 3% over the past year. With allergy products showing strong growth, upper respiratory products represent more than 15% of total sales in the top 20 health and beauty product categories.
Schiff Nutrition acquires Airborne brand
SALT LAKE CITY — A leading provider of immune support products has become part of Schiff Nutrition.
Schiff announced that it acquired Friday the Airborne brand GF Capital Private Equity Fund LP in an all-cash transaction valued at $150 million, subject to certain adjustments. The company said the acquisition positions Schiff as a leader in the immune support segment.
"Schiff is focused on building premium brands and leading innovation," Schiff president and CEO Tarang Amin said. "Airborne is a strong brand and will make an excellent addition to Schiff’s portfolio, and we plan to leverage our science, innovation, marketing and sales capabilities to further its growth."
Airborne CEO Marti Morfitt said the brand has reestablished growth with a strong pipeline of new products and marketing programs and added that the transition to Schiff "[brings] great talent and resources to the business and share[s] our passion for building a leading immune support brand."
GSK advocates broadening scope of nicotine replacement therapy
PARSIPPANY, N.J. — GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare strongly supported efforts to inform smokers of the impact tobacco use has on the body, as well as effective ways to quit, during a congressional briefing Friday that was sponsored by Reps. Frank Pallone, D-N.J., and Tim Murphy, R-Pa.
The briefing, entitled "Understanding Smoking Addiction and How to Accelerate Quitting," addressed how to improve the nation’s policies and programs to help smokers become tobacco free.
"As the prevalence of quitting smoking in the United States continue to stall, more work must be done to reduce the level of tobacco dependence," GSK stated. "It is critically important that we advance the utilization of cessation options, like nicotine replacement therapy, and broaden the recommendations for its use to help more smokers quit. The current NRT label may be limiting for some smokers and they may have a better chance at quitting if they are able to personalize their approach and use multiple interventions."