Online pharmacy NetMeds buys video consultation app JustDoc

Online pharmacy NetMeds buys video consultation app JustDoc
Photo Credit: Thinkstock
25 Sep, 2018

Chennai-based online pharmacy NetMeds Marketplace Pvt. Ltd has acquired online video consultation app JustDoc in a cash-and-stock transaction.

NetMeds will fully absorb the JustDoc team, integrate its technology with Netmeds.com and will roll out a new offering shortly, the company said in a statement. It didn't disclose the deal value.

JustDoc, run by Bangalore-based Godel Technologies Pvt Ltd, was founded in August 2015 by IIT graduates Jugal Anchalia, Abhishek Kumar and Vikash Singh. It enables patients to do video consultations with doctors via its website and app.
With the acquisition, NetMeds marks its entry into the diagnostics sector where it plans to offer end-to-end consultancy in the healthcare, lifestyle and patient counselling segments.

“The acquisition of JustDoc brings an extensive and experienced physicians’ network, which will be the perfect addition to our present range of products and services at this stage in our growth plan,” Pradeep Dadha, founder and CEO of NetMeds, said.

Currently, NetMeds offers prescription medicine and over-the-counter (OTC) products as well as an electronic health records storage app.

The acquisition is in line with NetMeds’ plans to expand its reach to more health-related products and services. “Adding end-to-end video consultation workflows can make the whole process of providing high quality and affordable healthcare services far more efficient,” Dadha said.

This is the second acquisition by NetMeds; the company had acquired Delhi-based hyperlocal drugs delivery app Pluss in November 2016.

JustDoc had raised an undisclosed amount in seed funding from former Infosys director TV Mohandas Pai, InMobi co-founder Mohit Saxena and other investors in January 2016. TaxiForSure co-founder Raghunandan G, Singapore Angel Network and TracxnLabs had also participated in this round.

Dadha set up NetMeds in 2010. His family ran Tamilnadu Dadha Pharmaceuticals Ltd, which was acquired and merged with drug maker Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd in 1997. His father, S Mohanchand Dadha, founded the family business and is on the board of Sun Pharma.

NetMeds lets users order their medicines via its portal and mobile app by uploading their prescriptions. A team of qualified pharmacists verifies the prescription for validity and prescribes the appropriate dosage accordingly. The company claims to have eight fulfilment centres in Chennai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Delhi, Pune, Ahmedabad, Raipur and Kochi.

The company claims to provide prescription medicine and healthcare products to more than three lakh patients across India, serving over 19,000 pin code areas. The company has seen double-digit growth rates month-on-month since inception, it said.

In its most recent fundraising, the company had secured $35 million in a Series C funding round from Southeast Asian business conglomerate Daun Penh Cambodia Group and existing investors.

In October last year, Tanncam Investment had led a $14-million (Rs 90 crore) investment round into the company along with Sistema Asia Fund into the e-pharmacy. In 2015, it raised $50 million (Rs 325 crore) from healthcare-focused global private equity firm OrbiMed, and existing investors MAPE Advisory Group and Dadha’s family investment fund. 

Online pharmacies

NetMeds competes with a number of companies in the online pharmacy segment. These include 1mg, LifCare and PharmEasy.

In April this year, Gurugram-based 1mg had secured fresh capital at a valuation of $75 million. In July 2017, it had raised $15 million (Rs 96.7 crore) in a Series C round of funding from its existing investors such as Sequoia India and Omidyar Network.

In March this year, IL&FS Investment Managers Ltd invested Rs 20 crore ($2.9 million) in Corner Store Technologies Pvt. Ltd, which operates under the brand LifCare. It runs a subscription-based pharmacy and communicates with its customers via the phone or through mobile apps.

In March, Mumbai-headquartered 91 Streets Media Pvt. Ltd, which operates PharmEasy, raised an undisclosed amount in a Series C round of funding led by existing investors Bessemer Venture Partners and Orios Venture Partners.

In the same month, online pharmacy app Myra raised about Rs 12 crore ($1.84 million) led by Tokyo-headquartered management consulting firm Dream Incubator.

Medikoe, mChemist and BigChemist are some of the other players in this segment.