P&G Health Care : advertising & marketing profile

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P&G Health Care is the business unit which houses Procter & Gamble's oral care and general OTC healthcare products. Among the major global brands housed within this division are Crest and Oral-B, Vicks and Peptobismol. The portfolio has undergone several major changes in recent years, not least the sale of what was once a substantial pharmaceuticals division to Warner Chilcott for $2.8bn. In a further adjustment to the focus of the business, P&G's OTC healthcare products outside North America were transferred into a new joint venture with generic manufacturer Teva at the end of 2011. The Health Care division was reshuffled in 2013, with feminine care shifted across to Baby & Family Care and replaced by Iams pet care and the Gillette grooming business. Iams was later sold, and Gillette carved out as a separate division. Another change of direction was announced in 2018: the Teva joint venture was dissolved giving P&G back full control of its international OTC business. At the same time the group acquired the consumer healthcare business of German pharma group Merck. P&G sold off its international towels and tissue business in 2007. See also:

Selected P&G Health Care advertising

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Adbrands Daily Update 6th Feb 2019: Procter & Gamble is rumoured to have spent as much as $100m to acquire This Is L, a niche manufacturer of condoms and period products made from organic, chemical free materials. Its sanpro pads and tampons are made without pesticides, chlorine, fragrances or dyes; the condoms contain no glycerin, parabens or other "nasties". "This acquisition is a perfect complement to our Always and Tampax portfolio, with its commitment to a shared mission to advocate for girls' confidence and serve more women," said Jennifer Davis, president of P&G Global Feminine Care. "We feel this is a strong union and together we can be a greater force for good."

Adbrands Weekly Update 26th Apr 2018: In something of a surprise development, Procter & Gamble jumped back into global healthcare with two major developments. In its biggest purchase since Gillette more than a decade ago, P&G agreed to acquire the consumer healthcare division of German drug company Merck Group for €3.4bn, just under four times annual revenues. Merck had announced a strategic review of that division earlier this year, but buyers have been hard to find, not least because Pfizer's OTC division was also up for sale. Brands include Bion, Femibion and Neurobion mineral supplements, Seven Seas vitamins, Nasivin decongestants and Kytta pain relief gel. That deal accompanied an announcement from P&G that it will dissolve its partnership with troubled Israeli drug developer Teva, which has been largely responsible for marketing P&G's OTC portfolio outside North America since 2011. The two companies will take back control of their own brands from July this year. There is no significant financial impact for either company from the termination. Investors were generally unimpressed by both developments. "Perhaps the best thing that could be said about the Merck acquisition is that P&G didn't do a bigger, more distracting deal like one for the consumer health care unit that Pfizer has been trying to sell," said the WSJ. "P&G still needs to come up with a compelling response to fundamental challenges in its home US market."

Adbrands Weekly Update 9th Apr 2015: Ads Of The Week "Naptime". Saatchi & Saatchi New York delivers another set of likeable, well-observed spots for P&G's second-string nappy brand Luvs, contrasting the different attitudes of nervous first-time parents from well-experienced seconders. It's a clever concept, one every twice-plus parent will recognise. Some of the set-ups are funnier than others, but all are warm and true. 

Adbrands Weekly Update 12th Mar 2015: Chinese regulators fined Procter & Gamble almost $1m for making false claims in advertising for its top-selling Crest toothpaste. It said that the company had overstated product benefits in respect of its Crest Whitening variant, and digitally altered images to make teeth look whiter than they were. Local news sources said the Rmb6bn fine (around $960,000) was a record for this type of misdemeanour. In the ad, a well-known local TV presenter was seen worrying that her teeth wouldn't be white enough for a magazine photoshoot. As a result of brushing with Crest for just one day, she ends up with dazzlingly white teeth. P&G accepted that its claims had not been sufficiently "precise".

Adbrands Weekly Update 23rd Oct 2014: A string of other major changes at P&G were announced this morning as we went to press. These include the retirement of several senior leaders including North America president Melanie Healey and P&G Prestige president Joanne Crewes. New appointments include Carolyn Tastad, who becomes president, North America selling & market operations; Jeff Schomberger becomes global sales officer, customer business development; Patrice Louvet takes over as president, P&G Prestige and adds responsibility for global salon professional; Charlie Pierce becomes president, global grooming; Steve Bishop becomes president, global oral care.

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