Case Study: The Johnson & Johnson Tylenol Crisis

Jun 16th, 2015
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Before the crisis, Tylenol was the most successful over-the-counter product in the United States with over one hundred million users. Tylenol was responsible for 19 percent of Johnson & Johnson's corporate profits during the first 3 quarters of 1982. Tylenol accounted for 13 percent of Johnson & Johnson's year-to-year sales growth and 33 percent of the company's year-to-year profit growth

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AnalysisCase Study: The Johnson & Johnson Tylenol CrisisBefore the crisis, Tylenol was the most successful over-the-counter product in the United States with over one hundred million users. Tylenol was responsible for 19 percent of Johnson & Johnson's corporate profits during the first 3 quarters of 1982. Tylenol accounted for 13 percent of Johnson & Johnson's year-to-year sales growth and 33 percent of the company's year-to-year profit growth. Tylenol was the absolute leader in the painkiller field accounting for a 37 percent market share, outselling the next four leading painkillers combined, including Anacin, Bayer, Bufferin, and Excedrin. Had Tylenol been a corporate entity unto itself, profits would have placed it in the top half of the Fortune 500 (Berge, 1998). During the fall of 1982, for reasons not known, a malevolent person or persons, presumably unknown, replaced Tylenol Extra-Strength capsules with cyanide-laced capsules, resealed the packages, and deposited them on the shelves of at least a half-dozen or so pharmacies, and food stores in the Chicago area. The poison capsules were purchased, and seven unsuspecting people died a horrible death. Johnson & Johnson, parent company of McNeil Consumer Products Company which makes Tylenol, suddenly, and with no warning, had to explain to the world why its trusted product was suddenly killing people (Berge, 1998). Primary Evidence. Robert Andrews, assistant director for public relations at Johnson & Johnson rec

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