TRU NIAGEN, whose sole active ingredient is ChromaDex's patented nicotinamide riboside — named NIAGEN NR — in capsule form, is said to possess muscle, liver, cognitive, metabolic and even skincare benefits.
Steady APAC growth
The product made its APAC debut last September, when the US-based ChromaDex partnered with Hong Kong retailer AS Watson to sell the product in over 100 Watsons stores across the country, as well as the company’s online store.
In January this year, Watsons brought TRU NIAGEN to Singapore, where it is currently sold in more than 100 Watsons stores and its online retail store.
Regarding its Kiwi expansion and deal with Matakana Superfoods, Will Black, VP of sales and marketing at ChromaDex, told NutraIngredients-Asia: "We chose Matakana Superfoods as our exclusive New Zealand distributor because it’s an established dietary supplement manufacturer and marketer, and has broad channel access in New Zealand.
"More importantly, however, Matakana Superfoods shares ChromaDex's belief in the importance of science- and evidence-based claims when it comes to marketing dietary supplements to consumers."
He added that under this arrangement, TRU NIAGEN will be initially sold online at its NZ website, before being made available through various food and drug channels in the country.
He further said: "An ageing population with growing concerns around metabolic health issues would likely provide the best growth opportunities for TRU NIAGEN in New Zealand.
"Besides that, increasing knowledge and understanding of mitochondrial health and the role that NAD (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide) and nicotinamide riboside play in supporting long-term cellular health will also support our growth in New Zealand."
While Black declined to reveal specific details about whether or not ChromaDex plans to launch TRU NIAGEN in other APAC markets, he said: "It's currently available in Hong Kong, Macau and Singapore. We launched in these markets initially because we have regulatory standing there.
"We have filed for regulatory approval in additional key markets in the region, and our dossiers are currently under review by the respective local country authorities. Ahead of those approvals, we are actively looking at options for collaborations and potential partnerships.”
ChromaDex CEO Robert Fried had earlier said in a statement that the company would “continue the worldwide expansion of TRU NIAGEN”, and were “selecting territories based on economics as well as strategic learnings”.
In terms of ChromaDex’s product portfolio, Black said the firm would continue focusing on TRU NIAGEN for the time being.
“Our primary focus this next year will be the continued growth of TRU NIAGEN in our home market, as well as international expansion as our regulatory status broadens.
"We will continue to support and invest in the science around NAD and nicotinamide riboside. We will, however, be open to looking at adjacent space opportunities as they present themselves."
Partners in expansion
Like ChromaDex, Matakana Superfoods is eyeing APAC expansion.
After finding e-commerce success on Amazon, the supplement manufacturer and distributor told NutraIngredients-Asia it wanted to establish a retail presence outside Australia, Chile and its native New Zealand.
Business development manager Joseph Glucina had said the company was particularly interested in Singapore, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
TRU NIAGEN's New Zealand launch has been scheduled for mid-September 2018.