DARMSTADT, Germany--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Merck’s Consumer Health division has significantly increased in size following its incorporation of Neurobion®, a leading global brand in the vitamin B segment, and Floratil®, a leading brand in Brazil in the probiotic antidiarrheal segment, from the Merck Serono division. The additions increase annual sales of Consumer Health by approximately 55% to over $1 billion (> € 740 million).
“The inclusion of the Neurobion and Floratil brands into Consumer Health will further strengthen our presence in emerging markets and add two leading brands to our portfolio. We see a lot of potential in building both of these brands through a consumer centric approach. This is also an important step in our journey towards developing a minimum of 3% total share per key market and at least 3 strong brands, focusing on our strategic investment markets.” said Udit Batra, CEO and President of the Consumer Health division.
The Neurobion and Floratil brands are in leadership positions in their respective categories, with the majority of business conducted in fast growing emerging markets in Latin America and Asia. The transfer is the result of a cross divisional analysis which identified that both brands would benefit from inclusion in the Consumer Health portfolio. The future ‘consumerization’ of Neurobion and Floratil is expected to generate additional value for the Merck Group.
The transfer will allow the Neurobion and Floratil brands to benefit from Consumer Health’s significant consumer focused brand expertise, while it enables Merck Serono to even more focus on innovative prescription medicines. The changes also lead a shift in the Consumer Health division’s emphasis to emerging markets. Total sales for Consumer Health from emerging markets will increase from 28% to 51% following the move. The operational integration of the Neurobion and Floratil brands was completed on December 31, 2013.
“The transition of these brands is a reflection of the division’s successful track record in delivering consistent growth and value for key consumer brands” said Stefan Oschmann, Member of the Merck Executive Board & CEO Pharma, with responsibility for the Merck Serono and Consumer Health divisions. “The changes allow our Consumer Health business to continue its shift in focus toward emerging markets.”
Merck’s existing Consumer Health Division (excluding Neurobion and Floratil) today posted full year figures for 2013, which illustrated an increase of profit (EBITDA pre one-time items) of 8.5% to € 72 million, based on organic sales increases of 5.6% (countered by a negative foreign exchange impact of -4.7%) to € 477 million. Europe and Emerging Markets were the main drivers of strong organic increases. Four of the eight strategic brands (Cebion®, Sangobion®, Kytta® and Femibion®) delivered double-digit organic growth rates and gained market share in the division's key regions, while the Bion®, Nasivin® and Sedalmerck® brands all posted growth rates in the mid-to-high single digits. The division’s cost structure benefited from measures implemented as part of the company’s “Fit for 2018” transformation and growth program, alongside better resource allocation, changes to the product portfolio and an exit from unprofitable markets.
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About the Merck Consumer Health Division
Brands of the Merck Consumer Health division, such as Neurobion®, Floratil®, Bion®, Nasivin®, Seven Seas®, Femibion®, Kytta®, Sangobion®, Sedalmerck®, and Cebion®, are innovative leaders in key markets, backed by science and trusted by consumers worldwide. The division Consumer Health is with its around 2,000 employees globally active in over 40 markets. Since 2014, the portfolio comprises of brands with annual total revenues of over $ 1 billion. Consumer Health is a division of the Merck Group with global headquarters in Darmstadt, Germany.
About Merck Group
Merck is a leading company for innovative and top-quality high-tech products in the pharmaceutical and chemical sectors. Around 38,000 employees work in 66 countries to improve the quality of life for patients, to further the success of our customers and to help meet global challenges. We generated total revenues of € 11.1 billion in 2013 with our four divisions: Merck Serono, Consumer Health, Performance Materials and Merck Millipore.
Merck is the world's oldest pharmaceutical and chemical company. Since 1668 our name has stood for innovation, business success and responsible entrepreneurship. The founding family remains the majority owner of the company to this day. We are Merck, the original, and hold the global rights to the Merck name and brand. The only exceptions are Canada and the United States, where we are known as EMD.