OTC Action Workshop charts roadmap for Indian OTC market

OTC Action Workshop charts roadmap for Indian OTC market

Our News BureauMumbai

After more than three years post the Asia Insights OTC workshop conducted in 2006, the same team of Nicholas Hall and Co. and CubeX-the Business Intelligence division of Sorento, conducted another interesting one day interactive workshop on OTC marketing in India. This workshop was well attended by marketing teams of OTC companies not just from India but also from Singapore, USA and Europe.

Global and Indian OTC Market

The workshop commenced with Nicholas Hall, the global guru on OTC sharing his invaluable insights and trends of the global OTC market. It was interesting to note that despite the recession trend, categories like vitamins and minerals Supplements have registered significant growth. Reason being, the need to stay fit in order to save their jobs by not falling ill or taking a day off.

Susan Josi from CubeX gave a worthwhile analysis of the opportunity for many OTC companies in India to grow inorganically by targeting Rx brands enjoying a significant consumer equity. Evaluating the so called Deemed OTC brands (Rx brands which have a high component of self medication use) which contributes close to 60 percent of the OTC market, would make great sense for OTC companies wanting to expand their portfolio.

Indeed the last two years saw an unprecedented spate of new launches and Rx to OTC shifts which helped the Indian OTC market to register the highest growth rate of 10.7 percent in 2009 according to Nicholas Hall and Co.’s OTC database, DB6 2010.

Additionally a session on overcoming the challenges of the regulatory framework for OTC marketing by the regulatory expert, Dr Rashmi Kulshetra, was a torchlight for many of the delegates who always felt it as the most daunting task in their efforts of taking the OTC route.

COMPASS – Chemist’s OTC Market Probe and Assessment Study:

One of the key influencers in the Rx to OTC switch are the Chemists. A glimpse of the in depth study on chemist, conducted by CubeX across 12 cities in India was presented by Anil Khanna, Business Head, CubeX. The top line findings shared were of interest to everyone as this has been an area of curiosity to most OTC marketers.

In depth case studies

To showcase the power of heritage brands and the opportunity in Rx to OTC shifts, case studies of certain successful brands that shifted from Rx to OTC, was presented by Dinar Mhatre, Head of Consumer Healthcare, Abbott India in the Antacid category and Brijesh Kapil, Director, Ranbaxy Consumer Healthcare on Revital and Volini.

Interactive and engaging

The highlight of the workshop was the break-out session on Pharmacy point of care strategies which exemplifies the new way in which OTC cos. need to engage the retail chemists.