In 2012, Bayer Sante Familiale led the France calming products market, accounting for a 27% share of value sales. Very active advertising coverage in famous magazines and newspapers throughout 2012 led to an excellent growth rate of 5% for Euphytose. In fact, Euphytose was the OTC product with the broadest coverage with regards to advertising in specialised press, and more especially in women's and health media, such as Biba, Top Santé, Femme Actuelle, Gala, Question de Femmes and Metro. This was an ingenious marketing strategy, considering that women account for 60% of overall value sales of calming and sleeping products in France.
Calming and sleeping products remain predominantly strict Rx in France, with some 22 benzodiazepines (active ingredients) being authorised. The median treatment period using anxiolytic and soporific benzodiazepines is seven months, with the most common active ingredients being alprazolam, zolpidem, bromazepam and lorazepam. In 2011, the strict Rx calming and sleeping segment generated value sales of €184 million; more than twice the OTC segment. Calming and sleeping is a highly prescription-geared area in France and consumption stabilised over the last two years.
Over the forecast period calming and sleeping is expected to stabilise at a negligible negative constant value CAGR. The ongoing shift to herbal and other non-standard OTC drugs, which are generally priced cheaper than standard tablets, will tend to reduce value sales in constant terms.
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