CINCINNATI - Procter & Gamble Co. had five of the nation’s top 10 non-food product launches in 2016, according to a new report by IRI, a Chicago-based market research firm.
The company tracks pricing, promotion and sales data on consumer packaged goods sold at supermarkets, drug stores and convenience stores nationwide. Each year, it publishes a list of top selling new products based on their first-year sales.
P&G typically has three to five launches that make the IRI New Product Pacesetters list. This year it had five products with combined first-year sales of $393.2 million.
“We’re proud that these innovations from Gillette, Tide, Crest, Tampax and Old Spice earned P&G five of the top 10 spots – and seven of the top 25,” said P&G spokesman Jeff LeRoy. “These successful product launches underscore P&G’s commitment to creating innovative, irresistibly superior products that delight consumers and drive category growth.”
It’s the second time in the last three years that five P&G products made the top 10. But it’s also lowest revenue total from its best-performing launches since 2012, when the company had three products in the Pacesetters top 10 with combined revenue of $216.9 million.
IRI said all brands are finding it tougher to rack up big first-year sales totals, thanks to digital marketing strategies that make it easier for smaller companies to grab market share.
“The brands in the middle of the pack are getting the squeeze as smaller, more targeted brands capture a growing share of Pacesetter dollar sales,” said IRI’s report. “Across top-selling 2014 brands, 58 percent of top launches earned $20 to $79 million in year-one sales. By 2016, that figure had fallen sharply, to just 28 percent of brands.”
P&G has been talking about this trend in recent conference calls, where it told Wall Street analysts it planned to reduce prices by up to 20 percent on Gillette razors.
“For the last two years, we've been losing users in the mid and value tiers of the U.S. blades and razors business,” Chief Financial Officer Jon Moeller said Feb. 23. “This is where most competitive products from both long-time branded competitors and new entrants are playing. We'll soon be making pricing interventions to better position our brands at all levels of the pricing ladder.”
Even though it lost market share to upstarts like Dollar Shave Club, P&G’s best product launch in 2016 was the Gillette Fusion Pro Shield, which ranked second on the Pacesetters list with $144.9 million in first-year sales. Here are the rest of P&G’s top five launches:
- Tide Pods Plus Febreze ranked fourth with $87.3 million in sales.
- Crest ProHealth Advanced mouthwash ranked fifth, generating $80.1 million.
- Tampax Pocket Pearl reached $41.9 in first-year sales and ranked ninth.
- Old Spice Fresher Collection finished 10th with $39 million in first-year sales.