Reckitt's OTC Sales Slide 40% In 'Exceptionally Weak' Cold & Flu Season
Reckitt reports major drop in OTC sales in Q1 as the cold and flu season was almost wiped out by social distancing measures related to COVID-19. CEO Laxman Narasimhan reveals he has seen green shoots in certain markets where restrictions have started to relax, insisting "there is no question flu will come back."
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Major Europe-based consumer health players GSK, Sanofi, Bayer and Reckitt are all hoping for a sales boost in Q2 following a difficult Q1 due to the almost non-existent cough and cold season. This earnings preview highlights what to look out for as these four firms report their second-quarter results over the coming weeks.
With Reckitt's OTC sales falling 3% in 2020, the firm has committed to doubling its R&D spend in search of breakthrough product innovations.
Consumers' significant shift to buying more health products online likely is a permanent trend, says RB CEO Laxman Narasimhan. A 37.4% jump in North America on health product stockpiling drove 13.6% growth in global health business sales.