Bayer Q1 results: CEO confident of ‘return to healthy growth’ amid steep drop in nutritionals sales

By Tingmin Koe

- Last updated on GMT

Redoxon is one of the multivitamin brands by Bayer. ©Bayer
Redoxon is one of the multivitamin brands by Bayer. ©Bayer

Related tags Bayer COVID-19 financial results

Bayer, the company behind supplement brands Redoxon and Berocca, reported a “significant decline” in its nutritionals category in APAC and other major markets, but the CEO is still confident that sales would “return to healthy growth” for the full year.

Bayer announced its financial results for the first quarter of this year last week on May 11 (Thursday).

Its consumer health division saw sales went up four per cent to 1.573 billion euros (US$1.72bn) as compared to the same period last year.

The sales growth was mainly led by increase in price, which was up eight per cent from the same period last year. Its sales volume, however, was down 3.9 per cent.  

The firm’s consumer health consists of five major categories, namely nutritionals, allergy and cold, dermatology, pain and cardio, and digestive health.

Within the nutritionals category, which consists of multivitamin brands such as Redoxon, Berocca, Supradyn, and pre-conception and pregnancy multivitamin brand Elevit, sales saw a “significant decline” ​of 10.5 per cent on a reported basis to 375 million euros (US$410m). 

This decline was attributed to “temporary supply constraints” ​and a strong performance in the prior year across all regions, including APAC. 

“The global supply chain disruptions that have broadly affected the consumer health and nutritionals industries have also impacted Bayer’s Consumer Health and nutritionals sales in APAC.  

Market category growth has been impacted by prior year dynamics of COVID-19. Consumer Health’s category performance has been affected by the mix of segments that are growing versus those that are slowing. 

“For example, Bayer’s Consumer Health is the category leader in the ‘immunity’ segment, which is declining, due to cycling high COVID-related growth in prior year,” ​a spokeswoman at Bayer’s Consumer Health Division said in response to queries from NutraIngredients-Asia.

CEO Werner Baumann, remains confident that the nutritionals category will rebound in sales.

“After three years of significant growth, our nutritionals category declined by 10 per cent. We are confident that the category will return to healthy growth for the full year,”​ he said during the presentation of the financial results. 

In contrast to the nutritionals business, sales growth in Bayer's consumer health division was mainly seen in the allergy and cold category, which went up 19.2 per cent to 410m euros (US$448m), while that of pain and cardio was up 2.9 per cent to 216m euros (US$236m).

The digestive health category, on the other hand, saw sales went down 1.4 per cent on a reported basis to 210m euros (US$229m).

Key markets

The top three nutritionals markets for its Consumer Health Business in APAC are China, South East Asia, and Australia, the firm said.

Bayer's consumer health division in APAC brought in sales of 244m euros (US$266m), down 3.2 per cent on a reported basis.

APAC is only above Latin America in terms of sales coming from the consumer health products. In Latin America, sales were up 6.9 per cent to 201m euros (US$216m).

North America is Bayer’s largest market in terms of consumer health products, followed by the EMEA region, where sales were up 5.3 per cent and 5.1 per cent respectively to 612 million euros and 516 million euros respectively.

Despite the decline, the category was said to have remained at a high level overall, following a spike in sales in the past few years. 

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