Teva unifies pharmaceutical packaging worldwide

Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. produces 120 billion tablets and capsules each year, for distribution into 60 markets worldwide. Driving the company’s success is a long history of corporate acquisitions in the Americas, Europe and Asia—a business strategy that also eventually led to disunity of packaging design in its global product lineup.

Israel-based Teva, the leading supplier of generics globally, set out to conquer this problem with a redesign that would unify its packaging around the globe.

Key considerations of the redesign included:

• building confidence and trust with patients and their caregivers,

• simplifying the patient and caregiver experience,

• reducing stress and frustration in patients with multiple chronic conditions,

• providing easy-to-understand instructions for product use, and

• delivering clear package navigation.

Teva’s new packaging design is flexible enough to accomplish all those things in every market in which the products are distributed—while at the same time complying with local drug packaging regulations and requirements.

Noa Shumovitch, vp of marketing, brand and integrated marketing communications (IMC) at Teva Pharmaceutical, answers Packaging Digest’s questions about the redesign.


What were the goals driving Teva’s global packaging redesign?

Shumovitch: Teva aligned on primary and secondary objectives to build a harmonized design for the new packaging. First was to address unmet needs of pharmacists, patients and caregivers and be relevant to the needs of all key stakeholders. The secondary objective was to harmonize Teva’s packaging, given the many acquisitions Teva had over the years. Up until the new global brand rollout, there was no centralized effort to unify all packaging under one corporate brand. As a result, many packages did not have the Teva brand at all.


What elements of the packaging design were changed to achieve these goals?

Shumovitch: The introduction of a strong navigation system was proven to help all stakeholders find the most important information on the packaging quickly. This system showed how the eye catches the details of the new packaging, creating a hierarchy of how a user views the package in a seamless fashion. This transformation provided organization while at the same time allowing flexibility for different markets to accommodate local regulations and business needs.

Before the redesign, Teva’s products had widely different packaging designs.


How did Teva create a design flexible enough to work across all geographic markets and accommodate regulators globally?

Shumovitch: Teva’s new global brand positioning was developed using insights gained from speaking to more than 13,178 patients, 10,712 caregivers and 1,600 healthcare professionals from 24 countries between 2015 and 2018, all with a goal of understanding how health and illness are impacting people’s lives. These insights were used to inform the new packaging design, including a new brand logo, content for its digital resources and country-specific educational initiatives.

The new design was later fine-tuned and qualified by additional global research to address stakeholders’ needs of getting the most important information first. The design provides many areas of flexibility, such as color differentiation and product specifications to address specific local regulatory and business needs.

Furthermore, the global team works closely with each market to address any questions and assist when such flexibility is needed.


How does the new packaging design improve the patient and caregiver experience?

Shumovitch: Our packaging was not unified and did not meet the needs of our stakeholders. Oftentimes, it was unknown to the audiences if a product was, in fact, part of the Teva brand. When creating the new packaging, we needed to keep in mind the correct balance of continuing to build our brand recognition, as well as the rationale and functionality of unified packaging.

Through insights gathered from patients and carers, and pharmacists and physicians across key global markets, we found the most important aspect to improving the experience of our packaging was the ability to easily find important information. Knowing this, we worked with regulators in various markets to ensure our new design met regulatory requirements.

The new packaging design focuses on navigation—making use of a clear pack display that provides reassurance that the user is picking up the right product.

Also, the new bright and refreshing tones on the pack aim to alleviate any negativity the patient may already be dealing with and create a positive reaction by using designs pleasing to the eye.


How does the new design provide clear navigation to patients and caregivers?

Shumovitch: Findings via eye-tracking supported the outcome of quantitative research to show that audiences focused on the following key information first: product name, indication and dosage, followed by the corporate brand name. The design follows the natural flow of reading, making for a seamless experience for the user.


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Did Teva change the way use instructions are provided on-pack?

Shumovitch: The standard instructions were not augmented during the redesign. The table with medical information and instructions on how the medicine works remained intact in terms of verbiage, and there were no design changes to this part of the packaging.


How many countries were included in the redesign?

Shumovitch: The design will be rolled out globally across the majority of Teva’s branded products.


How many products were included?

Shumovitch: The packaging redesign impacts the entire Teva-branded portfolio of Teva’s products worldwide. The goal is to convert the entire portfolio, which will occur over time and result in one final unified brand.


When did the redesigned packaging roll out?

Shumovitch: Teva began rolling out the new packaging in 2018. The launch is done market by market, product by product, and is expected to see the last market change in the next couple of years.


Did Teva work with a creative agency to design the new packaging?

Shumovitch: The design concept development was done with the help of Conran Design Group and an internal Teva packaging steering group that had representatives from different markets.


Was this strictly a graphics redesign, or did Teva also make structural changes to the packaging?

Shumovitch: There were no significant structural changes to the packaging. The new design makes the packaging easier to stand up on its own; however, the redesign was purely two-dimensional.


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