Thornton & Ross licenses K-Y from RB in UK
Τετάρτη 15 Ιούν 2016
Stada Arzneimittel's Thornton & Ross is licensing the K-Y range of personal lubricants from RB in the UK.

The deal, which will run for eight years, follows RB's acquisition of global rights to the K-Y range from Johnson & Johnson. In the UK, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) said RB could acquire K-Y provided it licensed out the brand in the UK to a competitor for eight years.

Dieno George, chief executive officer of Thornton & Ross, said K-Y would benefit from the company's "considerable strength and experience in manufacturing pharmaceutical quality cream and gel products, and medical devices".

George added that the deal offered "exciting new opportunities".

Luc Slegers, regional director for Europe at Germany's Stada, said the K-Y licensing deal was part of Stada's "continued development of a strong branded portfolio".

Builds upon Centre of Excellence

Slegers added that the deal built upon the Centre of Excellence for OTC and prescription dermatology that Stada had established at Thornton & Ross.

Thornton & Ross said the transfer of K-Y ownership from Johnson & Johnson to RB would take place shortly, and would be followed by the out-licensing to Thornton & Ross.

K-Y joins a broad portfolio of brands at Thornton & Ross, including Covonia cough medicines, Hedrin head-lice treatments, the Care range of OTC products, the Cetraben and Zeroderma dermatological brands, Fultium vitamin D3 products, and Socialites e-cigarettes.

The UK generates a relatively small proportion of K-Y's sales, which were more than US$100 million at the time the deal between Johnson & Johnson and RB was announced in March 2014. RB said at the time that the brand was available in more than 50 countries, with the US, Canada and Brazil accounting for the majority of sales in 2013.

Commenting on the progress of the deal in July 2015, RB noted that K-Y had been integrated in all markets with the exception of the UK, where regulatory approval was pending, and New Zealand, where the acquisition had been turned down for anti-trust reasons.

Competition concerns in UK

According to the UK's CMA, RB's acquisition of the K-Y brand "could lead to higher prices for personal lubricants" in the UK. The CMA pointed out that K-Y and RB's Durex brand had a combined market share of almost three-quarters in "supermarkets and national pharmacies where the majority of customers buy these products".

The CMA said the eight-year period would "give a competitor an existing platform from which it can develop a new brand to rival the Durex range". "The licence will also facilitate that new brand in gaining access to supermarkets and national pharmacy chains to protect competition," it added.

Financial details of the out-licensing agreement between Thornton & Ross and RB were not disclosed.

Πηγή:  OTC Tool Box

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