Sticks and stones may break my bones but words may result in legal action because they can be misconstrued despite conscious wording.
Luckily for AFT Pharmaceuticals (ASX: AFP) the Australian High Court has sided with them, dismissing complaints made by the makers of Nurofen, Reckitt-Benckiser around the advertising of AFT’s painkiller product, Maxigesic.
Just yesterday the High Court turned down an application by Reckitt-Benckiser to appeal the December 2021 decision that AFT was indeed justified in making claims about Maxigesic.
The medication is a combination of both paracetamol and ibuprofen which has outperformed individual doses of paracetamol or ibuprofen in studies.
The claims disputed were related to comparative advertising, despite being founded and backed up by sound evidence.
“We take out legal obligations around product promotion seriously and find this judgement final vindication of our approach,” said AFT Managing Director, Hartley Atkinson.
“The judgement means we are not able to use in promotional materials the results of the Daniels study, which compared the Us formulation of Maxigesic with paracetamol and ibuprofen and placebo individually in 408 patients undergoing dental surgery.
“Maxigesic is the market leader in the paracetamol and ibuprofen combination medicine market in Australia. We believe informing customers of the analgesic effect of our medicine when compared to the individual paracetamol or ibuprofen agents will assist us to consolidate our position and accelerate our sales growth.”
Whilst AFT’s competitors in the over the counter analgesics market would not be best pleased with this decision, AFT are keen to return to the business of running their business, launching the first in a line of oral dose form line extensions. These include hot drink sachets just in time for the horrid winter cold and flu season. AFT showcased the sachets at the 2022 Australian Pharmacy Professional conference, attended by over 7000 professionals in the pharmaceutical industry.
The new products and impending sniffle season will hopefully see further uplift in sales revenue for the Company, improving on their 14% increase in revenue for the six months to 30 September 2021 to NZD $55,500.