Flipkart in talks for e-pharmacy biz

Digbijay Mishra & Madhav Chanchani | TNN
Bengaluru: After Amazon India, Walmart-owned Flipkart is trying to enter the e-pharmacy area as demand for on-line medication supply stays sturdy, two individuals conscious of the matter mentioned. Flipkart is constructing its personal staff internally for the e-pharmacy enterprise. But it has additionally held early stage partnership talks with PharmEasy even because the Mumbai-based e-pharmacy agency is claimed to be in superior discussions to accumulate Bengaluru-based rival Medlife, the individuals added.
Flipkart CEO Kalyan Krishnamurthy has held a number of rounds of talks with PharmEasy’s founding staff, exploring varied contours of a partnership. “Flipkart additionally desires to make certain of the authorized framework earlier than rolling out the service as there are ambiguities with components of regulation for promoting medication on-line, which has created friction with conventional chemists,” one of many individuals conscious of the matter mentioned.
After Amazon’s rollout of pharmacy companies final week in Bengaluru, the All India Organisation of Chemists and Druggists (AIOCD) had despatched a letter to Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, saying the launch was unlawful.
While these discussions are in early phases, a possible funding by Flipkart can be one of many choices on the desk, however these particulars haven’t been finalised but, sources conscious of the dialogue added. “We will not be in talks with any e-pharma participant with an funding view as of now,” a Flipkart spokesperson mentioned, with out commenting on discussions for a partnership.“As a part of the trade, we hold speaking to everybody,” PharmEasy co-founder Dhaval Shah mentioned. PharmEasy’s order volumes are at present mentioned to be 40-50% increased than pre-Covid-19 ranges, much like a surge in demand on different platforms. Both Amazon and Flipkart’s curiosity in medication supply comes at a time when the trade is seeing consolidation with Reliance Industries being within the closing phases of the method to shut the acquisition of NetMeds, which was first reported by TOI in May.
“It’s definitely noteworthy when Amazon enters the area. For Flipkart, this has been an space of curiosity for some time and it’s a matter of time for the corporate to enter this area, particularly after Amazon’s entry,” a senior govt of an internet pharmacy startup mentioned.
According to a February report by market analysis agency RedSeer, the e-pharma trade, together with consultancy and diagnostics, is about $1.2 billion. This is anticipated to achieve about $16 billion in 5 years. While over four million households have been already shopping for medicines on-line, this area has seen scores of recent customers adopting the brand new route too.

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