TitleBoots - Formenti S.p.A.
DescriptionThis collection comprises the records of Boots-Formenti S.p.A. The catalogue is in the process of being updated and additional entries for this series are anticipated.
Administrative HistoryBoots appointed Dott. Formenti S.p.A as distributors on 1 March 1949 on an initial agreement for 3 years. Formenti was founded in Milan in 1901 and at this time was run by three Formenti brothers. There was an office staff of 33, sales force of 50 (plus 12 local agents) and factory with a production staff of 31. As well as acting as an agent for Boots, and other third parties, it sells a range of its own products. A separate Formenti company was floated in Switzerland and Boots have been asked for permission for it to sell Boots products there also. Mr R V Parkinson and Mr S M Peretz were both involved in the Formenti venture.
Sales to Italy during the late 50s and early 60s covered medical, pharmaceutical, veterinary, horticultural, chemical and ‘miscellaneous’ products. In 61/62, the best-selling medical products were Herapin Injection and Insulin. Fenox, Delta-Fenox and Corvotone were also being manufactured in Italy. Products in the process of registration around 1962 were Didandin, Melsedin, Benagol (Strepsils), Tussils and Febramine. Formenti were reported to be keen to introduce a range of other popular Boots products including Lanoline Cream, Freece, Satin Hair Spray and Glucose Barley Sugar Drops. In 1961, the total UK national exports of drugs and medicines to Italy totalled £693,000.
On 20 April 1953 a Packing Agreement was signed allowing Formenti to repack certain formulated products from Nottingham that had been made in bulk. This was superceded on 22 July 1957 by a Manufacturing Agreement permitting them to produce certain goods locally. The agreement thus allowed Formenti to pack Chlorocide, Heparin Injection, Protamine Sulphate Injection and Thiepentone Injection and to manufacture Benagol, Fenox, Corvotone Oral and Injection, Delta-Fenox, Haparin Injection, Thiopentone Suppositories, Didandin and Melsedin with royalties being paid to Boots.
In 1962/63, a joint Boots/Formenti Company was proposed to sell Boots preparations in Italy, with Boots as the majority shareholder (55%) and the Board consisting of two directors from both Formenti and Boots. The new Boots-Formenti S.p.A began trading on 1 April 1964. The inventory was initially confined to Benagol (Strepsils) because the Italian Ministry of Health had not, by this date, authorised transfer of the registration of other products from Dott. Formenti to Boots-Formenti. Authorisation was given later on that year (date TBC)
By September 1965, Boots-Formenti included the following products in their inventory: Benagol, Fenox, Melsedin, Corvotone Vials and Oral, Delta Fenox, Heparin, Thiopentone, Didandin, Insulin, A.M.C. Mouthwash, Medicated Talc, Drox Shampoo, Drox Sachets, E45 Cream, Albany, K285 Powder, Furamide Compound, Lignocaine, Anodesyn Ointment and Anodesyn Suppositories.
Mr S M Peretz resigned from the Boots-Formenti board in March 1967 and was replaced by Boots new Head of International Operations, Mr L A Coombs.
Brufen became available in Italy through Formenti shortly after it's launch in the UK in 1969 (c1969-1972)

In 1977, Italy was part of ‘Area 1’, along with Benelux and France. Area director was T G Richardson. Formenti, by this stage, was mainly marketing Brufen but with small sales of Strepsils. Boots had no resources of its own in respect of people or fixed assets, for which it uses the services of Formenti, who also contract tablet manufacture both Brufen and Strepsils for the company. Penetration into the Italian market with Brufen was extremely good but there was strong competition from other newly introduced anti-rheumatic products.

In March 1989, Boots purchased the 45% shareholding in Dott. Formenti SpA thus establishing a wholly-owned subsidiary in Italy. The new company, Boots Italia SpA, was formed to expand business in Italy, the fifth largest pharmaceutical market in the world.
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