- Tata Groups allegedly in talks with online e-pharmacy firm 1mg
- Tata’s Reliance is also in the negotiations with e-grocery, BigBasket store to increase its digital presence.
- In the wake of Covid pandemic, India’s online pharmacy firms have witnessed tremendous growth.
THD NewsDesk, New Delhi: All set to revolutionise India’s pioneering e-pharmacy sector, the Tata group plans to secure a majority stake in online pharmacy 1mg. According to Economic Times reports, the Tata conglomerate, lured by the profits in the online pharmacy sector owing to the Covid pandemic, desires to benefit from its growth.
“The talks have been ongoing as Tatas look to build their super-app platform. The Tata group’s strategy is to pick up controlling stake but keep the management to run the operation…,” said an anonymous person in close contact with the business groups. Unfortunately, no confirmed statement has been released by either the Tata or 1mg cofounder at the moment.
Backed by the Sequoia Capital, 1mg plans to raise around $100 million though there is a possibility that the funding may not come through.
As told the Economic Times,
“With heavyweights like Reliance and Amazon coming into the sector, independent players will find it hard to sustain themselves. They will need to align with one of the bigger groups…”.
Currently, Tata’s Reliance is in a bid to compete with the world’s largest online retailer, Amazon that also plans to invest in the expanding e-pharmacy sector. Amazon has already launched its prescription drug delivery service in Bengaluru with Cloudtail, in which it has a 24% stake.
Aspiring to increase its digital presence, the Tata group is also in talks with India’s largest e-grocery BigBasket. Rumoredly, the Tatas are planning to invest a whopping $1 billion to secure a 50-50 ownership stake.
Out of the many strategic investments in India’s online pharmacy sector, The Gurugram-based 1mg, Pharmeasy, Netmeds and Medlife top the list. The others being Mumbai-based Pharmeasy backed by Temasek and CDPQ and Orios Venture Partners merging with Medlife.
The mergers in the pipeline may expand the services of these online pharmacies by offering online lab testing, doctor consultations, and even insurance claims management services. Moreover, substantial business houses also aim to create a portfolio of products in the nutrition and supplements category.
Though the initial period of lockdown was a tough one for e-pharmacy firms, the months following the dip in sales witnessed a tremendous increase in sales. During the pandemic, e-pharmacies made inroads into about 9 million households in the country due to the lockdown, according to the Frost & Sullivan statistics.
Source: ET Healthworld