Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Launching Alli

GlaxoSmithKline is about to find out whether the phrase "oily discharge" sounds better over-the-counter than it does by prescription.

The big US Alli launch is scheduled for this week; pharmacies will be stocking up on the OTC weight-loss drug (a half dose of Roche's prescription-only Xenical) as of this Wednesday, and the drug goes on sale next Monday. For all its reportedly softly-softly approach and emphasis on only helping those people who have a strong will to drop a few pounds, GSK is sure going to spend a ton of cash to get its message across.

Reuters is reporting that the launch--which should see GSK spend $150 million on marketing this year--is chock full of superlatives.

"It will be one of the largest launches that GSK has ever undertaken and probably one of the largest OTC launches that has been made," Greg Westerbeck,
global marketing head for Alli, told reporters in

Between Alli and Sanofi-Aventis' rimonabant (Zimulti/Acomplia)'s date with the FDA on Wednesday (which, depending on your view of psychiatric events, might get messy), prepare yourselves for an onslaught of diet-drug stories. For Medtech Insight's recent take on the obesity products market, including drugs and devices, click here.


John Mack said...

Speaking of sounding better, how about the Alli newspeak used in the DTC campaign?

See my post to Pharma Marketing Blog: Alli Newspeak: Oily Spotting is "Treatment Effect"

Truthman30 said...

Its seems alli has a lot of side effects...

possibly colon cancer and a lot of number twos...