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Switch-up for the ‘Purple Pill’

BY Michael Johnsen

Pfizer successfully switched Nexium to over-the-counter in late May, and with that brought a $6 billion book of prescription business to antacid aisles, according to IMS Health data compiled over 2012. First-month sales of the iconic “Purple Pill” already have generated $15.1 million, according to IRI, and that suggests the latest proton-pump inhibitor to make the switch could be well on its way to matching the current No. 1 antacid tablet, Prilosec OTC, which stands at $344.2 million in sales for the 52 weeks ended June 15 across total U.S. multi-outlets.

(For the complete category review, including data, click here.)

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Alka-Seltzer offers ‘Relief’

BY Michael Johnsen

Thanks in part to the launch of Alka-Seltzer Fruit Chews in May of last year, the Alka-Seltzer brand has experienced a resurgence within the antacid tablet category. Brand sales were up 580.5% to $16 million for the 52 weeks ended June 15, according to IRI data across total U.S. multi-outlets. The brand not only appeals to a new generation of consumers, but with its gummy-like formula, it may still hold sway among the older generation looking for non-pill remedies. Varieties include ReliefChews, Heartburn ReliefChews and Heartburn + Gas ReliefChews.

(For the complete category review, including data, click here.)

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Mucinex Allergy joins lineup

BY Michael Johnsen

Reckitt Benckiser recently extended its Mucinex brand into the allergy set with the appropriately named Mucinex Allergy. “Super fantastic launch in the United States,” said Heather Allen, Reckitt Benckiser EVP category development, recently to investors. “Allergy is a $2.5 billion market in the United States. More than 75% of Mucinex users also take an allergy treatment, and now, we’re able to offer them Mucinex Allergy, a maximum strength, non-drowsy antihistamine [that] acts fast and lasts for 24 hours.”

(For the complete category review, including data, click here.)

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