GSL Medicine share leaps in Supermarkets and Petrol Stations Sweden.
In just two months a little under 10% of consumer purchases of non-prescription OTC medicines in Sweden have switched from pharmacies to supermarkets and petrol stations. In November 2009 the Swedish Government’s list of OTC medicines suitable for general sale were released into non-pharmacy channels. This move coincided with the abolition of the Swedish state’s pharmacy monopoly with the selloff of 465 of its estimated 900 Apoteket pharmacies to private firms.
The total Swedish non-prescription market is estimated to be worth €386 million in 2009 at consumer purchase prices.
According to supermarket trade magazine Fri Köpenskap, supermarkets and petrol stations have already achieved sales equivalent to 350 million crowns a year (€34.2 million). Heavily advertised consumer brands have seen higher levels of supermarket off take. For example 14% of consumer purchases of 20-tablet pack headache remedy Alvedon have switched to non-pharmacy channels
“While projections reflect just two months sales of GSL medicines in Sweden, the early results are similar to those achieved in Denmark and Norway in the post rollout period”, says healthcare consultant James Dudley author of ‘OTC Distribution in Europe the 2010 edition’.