Cosmetics manufacturer Dr. Wolff defied the crisis

Management of Dr. Wolff. Source: Dr. Wolff

Bielefeld-based pharmaceutical and cosmetics manufacturer Dr. Wolff defied the crisis in the past fiscal year. Innovative and rapidly developed products provide special economic effects. With around 780 employees, the company recorded an increase of 8.5% and achieved preliminary sales of EUR 340 million (2019: EUR 313 million).

Successful year 2020

“We look back on an enormously strenuous, but in the end successful year 2020,” summarizes Eduard R. Dörrenberg, Managing Partner of the Dr. Wolff Group. In line with the motto “Crisis in the morning and opportunity in the afternoon”, there were daily crisis updates already at the end of January. The focus was on employee safety, raw material supply and cash management. During this phase, it was decided within a few days to develop a hand disinfectant gel. For around six weeks from March 5 2020,

Bielefeld-based pharmaceutical and cosmetics manufacturer Dr. Wolff defied the crisis in the past fiscal year. Innovative and rapidly developed products provide special economic effects. With around 780 employees, the company recorded an increase of 8.5% and achieved preliminary sales of EUR 340 million (2019: EUR 313 million).

“We look back on an enormously strenuous, but in the end successful year 2020,” summarizes Eduard R. Dörrenberg, Managing Partner of the Dr. Wolff Group. In line with the motto “Crisis in the morning and opportunity in the afternoon”, there were daily crisis updates already at the end of January. The focus was on employee safety, raw material supply and cash management. During this phase, it was decided within a few days to develop a hand disinfectant gel. For around six weeks from March 5, we were the only company able to supply national pharmacies with this product. At the same time, further developments in the field of Corona prophylaxis were initiated. Shortly before the end of the year, scientific confirmation was also obtained for a hand cream with a proven anti-corona effect, within a two-minute application time. “It is the first hand cream in the world that cares for and acts against corona,” Dörrenberg says, adding, “In addition, we are working on further prophylaxis innovations.”

According to the motto “After Corona is not before Corona,” the aim was to push ahead with digital activities and expand the “e-Wolff” division to more than 30 employees. For the next phase, the motto was and still is “Still is Corona.” The conditions for security and protection against the virus were continually adjusted and the employees motivated not to slacken in their efforts and compliance with the AHA+L regulations. Free corona tests were offered.

Dental care showed double-digit growth

In the portfolio, the dental care sector (double-digit growth) emerged as the winner. The “Karex” brand in particular significantly outperformed the market. More and more scientific evidence on fluoride-free remineralization and caries prophylaxis is convincing dentists, pediatricians and consumers. Just recently, a successful study on caries prophylaxis in children with the fluoride-free toothpaste “Kinder-Karex” was accepted for publication in the Scientific Reports journal. This journal belongs to the internationally renowned Nature Publishing Group. Renewed scientific confirmation and a targeted customer approach, including on digital channels, are ensuring growth for the Plantur shampoo brand. With “Alpecin”, too, the Bielefeld-based manufacturer ranked better than the national hair shampoo market, which lost almost 5% in sales according to Nielsen data. In addition, business in Asia increased significantly after a difficult first quarter. Overall, this more than compensated for Corona-related losses in the hair salon business and individual foreign markets.

Positive business development expected

“We were very forward-looking and very active in 2020. We will continue on this course and expect positive business development in 2021 thanks to our strong brands and further innovations. Local setbacks in individual markets cannot be ruled out, although we are much more optimistic for Asia than for Europe. We believe that the crisis in Europe will last significantly longer, also due to a lack of digitalization,” is Eduard R. Dörrenberg’s outlook.

 

 

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