Sanofi Consumer Healthcare

Radical Transformation on the Horizon for Sanofi

Earlier this month, Sanofi announced a new strategic vision for its Consumer Healthcare division.  The new head of the division, Julie Van Ongevalle, shared that the company will focus on core brands and categories while pursuing first-in-class Rx-to-OTC switches in the ED and flu categories in the United States. Key components to future growth of Sanofi’s OTC business in the United States are novel Rx-to-OTC switches. The company is entrenched in its work to develop nonprescription versions of Cialis for erectile dysfunction and Tamiflu influenza medication in the States. As of December 2020, Sanofi has more than 16 clinical studies either complete or underway to support applications for OTC marketing of these two medications. Actualuse trials to understand how consumers behave and interact with these medicines will be key factors in the success of the switches. These brands have the potential to be blockbusters, as there are currently no medications for either condition available without a prescription in the United States. Detailed analyses of both of these medications and the likelihood and timing of approval and sales forecasts are included in Kline’s Rx-to-OTC Switch Forecasts study.   

Sanofi plans to divest 150 brands globally that are not part of this new strategic vision. After spinning off its Consumer Healthcare unit in December 2020, the goal is for it to be able to operate independently by 2022. Our performance has been impacted yearly by product-related issues on many of our tail brands,” Van Ongevalle noted, referring to product recall issues with the Zantac franchise and changing regulatory requirements in Europe and the United States.  By shedding non-core brands, Sanofi will “free up resources to focus on what adds value,” said Van Ongevalle. “The good news is that we have a very well-diversified portfolio across countries and categories, with stilluntapped potential in both already strong global and local brands. And we have the opportunity to build on these strong assets, embracing our complexity to unleash the potential of these brands.” 

Moving forward, Sanofi plans to focus on its digital and ecommerce marketing efforts for 100 global brands in categories it has identified as having strong growth potential: 

  • Topical analgesics 
  • Probiotics 
  • Allergy 
  • Oral analgesics 
  • Mental health 
  • Sleeping aids 
  • Supplements for bone and liver health 
  • Physical wellness 

These categories have been identified as growing at faster rates than the overall industry. In-depth analyses of these growth categories are profiled in Kline’s new Consumer Healthcare PULSE subscription service.  With deep expertise for more than four decades on the OTC market, Kline is uniquely positioned to provide market insights and actionable recommendations grounded in up-to-date primary research with key industry participants. Furthermore, Kline’s Management Consulting team, with its seasoned, experienced M&A and strategy support services, would leverage customized support and competitive intelligence services for industry participants considering brand acquisitions. The team is experienced working with both corporate and institutional investors. For more information, contact us. 

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