In 2012 Nutrition & Santé led the France weight management market with a 28% value share. With a widening portfolio of mass distribution products being positioned as soft and natural aids for weight management, the company was able to capture a very broad variety of potential consumers. Communication strongly emphasised the naturalness of its products, and was in tune with the prevailing trend, geared towards better eating and balanced dieting for weight management.
As a direct consequence of the Mediator scandal, the newly re-denominated French Health Security Agency ANSM (AFFSSAPS until April 2012) reinforced its surveillance and level of alert. Throughout 2012, the orlistat-based OTC obesity drug Alli was maintained on close monitoring, despite the favourable risks/benefits evaluation report issued in March 2012 by the European Medicines Agency. Consequently, OTC obesity saw the fastest decline, at a rate of 15% in 2012.
Over the forecast period weight management is expected to see a negative constant value CAGR of 2%. It will require time and a new marketing positioning to reassure French consumers about drugs for managing their weight. Key players will tend to continue to adapt their communication discourse in line with consumers' new mind set and expectations. With improved communication and improved positioning expected the distrust and scepticism of the population when it comes to weight management products will fade slowly over the next five years, thus mitigating the continuous decline of the category.
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