OTC medicines impact J&J’s earnings guidance
NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. Johnson & Johnson on Tuesday updated its earnings guidance for full-year 2010 to $4.65 to $4.75 per share, reflecting the impact of the voluntary recalls announced earlier this year of certain over-the-counter medicines and the suspension of manufacturing at the McNeil Consumer Healthcare facility in Fort Washington, Pa., among other factors.
J&J realized overall sales of $15.3 billion for the second quarter of 2010, an increase of 0.6% as compared to the second quarter of 2009. Over-the-counter and nutritional sales specifically in the United States were down 27.5% to $492 million, the company reported. OTC sales outside of the U.S. totaled $649 million, up 2.9%.
The McNeil recalls and the closure of its Fort Washington, Pa. is expected to result in a $600 million sales impact for 2010, J&J CFO Dominic Caruso told analysts Tuesday morning.
Through a combination of identifying alternative sources of product and shifting production of those OTC medicines once manufactured in Fort Washington to other J&J facilities, Caruso suggested supply would be ramping back up to historical levels toward the end of 2010, beginning of 2011. “Certainly in 2011 we will have alternative sources of supply ready,” he told analysts. Caruso also noted that the quality issues associated with McNeil Consumer in both the Fort Washington and Puerto Rico plants were limited to those facilities.
The product recalls and subsequent Fort Washington closure aren’t the only factors influencing sales of OTC medicines, Caruso noted. Consumers that had migrated to private-label purchases are continuing to buy private label, he said. “Share that private label had been able to obtain during the economic downturn has been ‘sticking’ a little longer than previous economic downturns,” Caruso said.
Prestige Brands revamps its Chloraseptic line
IRVINGTON, N.Y. Prestige Brands recently announced the introduction of a revamped line of Chloraseptic sore throat lozenges and Chloraseptic throat spray.
In addition to soothing sore throat pain, the lozenges help cool nasal passages and ease coughs, the company stated. The new lozenge includes cherry, citrus, honey lemon and green tea flavors.
The Chloraseptic lozenge line is available in 15- and 18-count packs with a suggested retail price of $3.99.
The Chloraseptic sore throat sprays have been updated with a new spray nozzle and an easy-to-use bottle. The new design has an improved shape that fits more easily into medicine cabinet and the new nozzle offers consumers the option of a wide or narrow spay and the ability to target specific sore spots in the throat. The sprays are available in original, kids and maximum strength portable sprays and are available in cherry, menthol and soothing citrus. Suggested retail price is $6.25.
Reckitt Benckiser expands marketing initiatives with PoweRBrands
PARSIPPANY, N.J. Reckitt Benckiser on Friday announced the launch of what may be the first social media game on Facebook to promote specific brands.
The game PoweRBrands, targeted toward 18 to 30 year olds, is designed to mirror the real-life experience of being a marketing executive in such a leading edge company as RB. By joining the “virtual RB” as a marketing executive, the player progresses through a combination of tasks and teamwork, and climbs the corporate ladder to eventually become global “president.”
PoweRBrands has been developed in partnership with Euro RSCG Riley and Nudge Social Media. It’s the first Facebook game of its kind, giving the player an opportunity to test their marketing and business ability, learn strategy and decision-making skills, and be introduced to the unique culture and challenges that face RB marketers every day.
“Over the last two to three years we have been developing a series of initiatives to reach out to talented students and people early on in their career,” stated Andraea Dawson-Shepherd, RB’s global communications director. “We aim to show them how RB operates, demonstrate the global nature of our operation, and underline the RB culture and how it differs from most ‘fast-moving consumer-goods’ companies,” she said. “The game is the logical ‘next step’ in building a strong online presence and it’s totally in keeping with our commitment to continuing innovation.”
RB already is an award winner in the digital realm, recently having been recognized for best use of social media at the Recruitment Advertising Awards and best website for organizations recruiting fewer than 100 graduates by the Association of Graduate Recruiters. The group’s campaign was also nominated in this year’s Digital Marketing Awards and CIPD Awards.
The game is supported by a Facebook fan page, also developed in partnership with Euro RSCG Riley, where players will be able to exchange news, and catch up on game changes and innovations. They’ll also be able to give feedback, provide ideas for new themes, and get all the latest information on poweRBrands. Players who want to learn more about RB can link to the careers website at RB.com.
RB’s portfolio of products includes 17 global “powerbrands” including: Lysol, Finish, Woolite, Clearasil, Mucinex and French’s. Reckitt Benckiser’s 17 global Powerbrands account for two-thirds of its net revenue, the company stated.