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Kline report: OTC growth sharper across online, c-stores and dollar versus mainstream stores

BY Michael Johnsen

PARSIPPANY, N.J. — Sales of over-the-counter medicines through alternate retail channels have grown by a compound annual growth rate of 9.4% from 2006 through 2011, far exceeding the 2.4% overall growth rate through all retail outlets, noted Kline in a report released Monday. Online sales saw the highest increase with a CAGR of 16.1%.

The U.S. retail industry remains highly consolidated with a fairly small number of large retail chains that continue to dominate OTC distribution. The three main retail outlets consisting of drug stores, mass merchandisers and food stores combined account for about 84% of OTC sales; however, other outlets, such as online, convenience stores, dollar stores and warehouse clubs, are kicking up the competition across several categories and account for nearly 15% of the OTC retail market.



"Growth opportunities within the retail environment should be explored on individual channel and category bases," stated Laura Mahecha, Kline’s healthcare practice industry manager. "While some of the alternate channels … can offer opportunity for growth in select categories and for certain brands, several other alternate retail channels ostensibly aren’t prime candidates for an increase of branded OTC sales.”



For example, vitamins, minerals, herbal products and such OTCs as pain relievers — products that consumers like to stock in their medicine cabinets — have a high rate of online purchase. However, OTC products for an immediate need, such as allergy relief, cough and cold preparations, and digestive products, tend to be purchased more often at brick-and-mortar stores, according to Kline. 


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Energizer to launch Light Fusion Technology line

BY Allison Cerra

ST. LOUIS — Energizer is showcasing some of its new products at this year’s Outdoor Retailer show, which includes the company’s new Light Fusion Technology line.

Sparked by consumer demand for more versatility, flexibility, durability and overall performance from their flashlights and lanterns, Light Fusion Technology lights transmit light throughout slim acrylic panels manufactured through a laser-etching process. The result is clean, uniform light and more compact form for easier packing and carrying, Energizer said.

Energizer said the new Light Fusion Technology line of lights — consisting of four flashlights and lanterns — will hit store shelves in spring 2013.

"We continually listen to our consumers to deliver better solutions for them every day," Energizer’s North America lighting products director of marketing Steve Einig said. "Energizer Light Fusion Technology lights with Smart Dimming Technology do that and more. We’ve designed a collection that delivers the performance, style and ruggedness that appeals to today’s outdoor enthusiast."

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CVS/pharmacy, MinuteClinic launch flu shot voucher program

BY Antoinette Alexander

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic are offering a flu shot voucher program in August as part of CVS/pharmacy’s Project Health free screening events.

Qualifying patients who attend a "Flu Voucher Fridays" Project Health event, complete the screenings and identify themselves as not having health insurance will receive a voucher redeemable for a flu shot at any CVS/pharmacy or MinuteClinic location this flu season. The flu shot vouchers are being offered as part of National Immunization Awareness Month.

CVS/pharmacy’s Project Health (Proyecto Salud in Spanish) also is offering free health screening events in August. Screenings will focus on vaccination reviews, vision acuity, glucose, blood pressure and body mass index for individuals in multicultural communities who have difficulty accessing preventive care. More than 200 Project Health events will take place in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas-Fort Worth, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C.

"CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic are committed to being the most convenient place to get a flu shot this season," stated Papatya Tankut, VP pharmacy professional services at CVS/pharmacy. "Offering flu shot vouchers to patients who may have difficulty affording a flu shot is just another way that we help people on their path to better health."

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone older than 6 months of age receive a seasonal flu shot every year. The minimum vaccination age at CVS/pharmacy varies by state.

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