J&J Bullish On OTC Drug Pricing, Consumer Regard For Its Brands
This article was originally published in The Pink Sheet Daily
Brand strength, not price cuts, drives J&J OTC product sales, says Worldwide Group Chairwoman Sandra Peterson. The firm has returned 80% of its recalled brands to store shelves and will restart Tylenol Arthritis distribution later this year, leaving one “substantive” product to re-launch.
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J&J/McNeil enter a guilty plea in federal court to a misdemeanor charge of distributing adulterated drugs and agree to pay a criminal fine of $20 million and forfeit $5 million. McNeil has submitted to FDA experts’ certifications of remediation processes being complete at its three facilities subject to a consent decree.
McNeil scaled up its manufacturing “volume and complexity substantially” following J&J’s acquisition of Pfizer’s consumer business in 2006, says McNeil Consumer VP Shane Freedman. “Just a few years later, we had the recalls” that led eventually to a consent decree with FDA,” he says.
Bayer closes its acquisition of Merck & Co.’s consumer business, aiming to become the top OTC player and saying other consumer product acquisitions could follow. Glaxo and Novartis look to close their agreement to combine their OTC businesses in the first half of 2015.