The steady move towards self-medication is changing the dynamics of dermatologicals in Belgium. Underpinned by an advertising and promotional campaign over 2018/2019, the prescription rate of topical and even vaginal antifungals declined further.
Dermatologicals is benefiting from wider distribution via retailers like Medi-Market. The category is also boosted by the contribution from more natural alternatives, as illustrated by the recent “liniment” trend.
When players innovate with real technology, they tend to move outside the boundaries of the OTC channel to launch under Rx status. Dermatologicals remains squeezed between added-value Rx items, dynamic dermocosmetic products (both not included in Euromonitor International data) and mainly cosmeceutical combination dietary supplements, such as Expert and Alline Procap, as well as premium skin care included in beauty and personal care and available in chemists/pharmacies.
Benelux manufacturers are often in a position of strength in a fragmented competitive landscape. Key Benelux players include established enterprises like Janssen-Cilag, Omega Pharma Belgium and Will Pharma and Tilman.
Janssen-Cilag remains the leader through its Daktarin umbrella brand (topical and vaginal antifungals) and Nizoral (medicated shampoos) in 2019. However, due to frequent changes of management and a fluctuating performance, the player has focused on tactical support for its brands and gaining recommendations from general practitioners for its brands in topical and, in particular, vaginal antifungals, rather than major investment in innovation or marketing.
Bayer follows a more B2C approach than Janssen-Cilag. In vaginal antifungals, strong advertising and promotion aimed at educating Belgian women and boosting self-medication helped Gyno-Canesten to establish itself as key challenger to Gyno-Daktarin.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Consumer Health market research database.