2019 saw generic analgesics gain significance in Bulgaria as increased spending on consumer health, widespread price sensitivity and the ageing population continued to drive demand for low-priced generics. Bulgaria’s senior citizens in particular tend to be very active and also very disciplined in terms of regular visits to the doctor.
The consistent growth seen in sales of adult aspirin during 2019 can be attributed in no small part to the practice of describing aspirin to a variety of patients to improve and protect their cardiac heart health. For these purposes acetylsalicylic acid, the active ingredient in aspirin, is normally prescribed in low doses of 100mg or below.
The outlook for combination analgesics and topical analgesics/anaesthetic remains very positive as increasingly hectic urban lifestyles and the increasing interest in an active life continue to support growth in these categories. Among the largest and fastest growing consumer segments for these products are urban women.
Analgesics are among the OTC products most commonly purchased by Bulgarians during cross-border shopping trips to neighbouring Turkey. The recent decline in exchange value of the Turkish lira against the euro, to which the Bulgarian lev is pegged, has resulted in considerably lower prices for many products in Turkey, including OTC consumer health.
With generics the first choice of many Bulgarians when it comes to analgesics, local players have focused mainly on generic products for years as their main way of catering to local demand. 2019 for instance saw Sopharma AD rebrand many of its leading OTC products, including Analgin, the leading brand in dipyrone, and Paracetamol, a strong name in acetaminophen.
The review period saw a consistent consolidation trend in chemists/pharmacies, with these retail outlets increasingly seen only in shopping districts in densely populated major urban areas. This presents both challenges and opportunities for the leading brand owners in analgesics as the category continues to mature.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Consumer Health market research database.