Flipkart, India’s biggest e-commerce platform, intends to enter the online pharmacy business with the purchase of sastasundar.com, according to reports. Flipkart formally announced that it has entered into an agreement with sastasundar.com to buy most of the shares in the online platform specializing in prescription-based drug delivery.
Kolkata-based SastaSundar is an eight-year-old firm with a market capitalization of $125 million at its most recent valuation. Following the acquisition of many e-pharmacy sites by big Indian conglomerates, Walmart-owned Flipkart has become the latest to join the frenzy. Reliance Retail Chain, the biggest in India, had recently acquired NetMeds, and the Tata Group had also made investments into the 1mg pharmaceutical company in June 2021.
Until recently, the Indian e-pharmacy industry has remained mostly untouched. The outbreak of the corona pandemic provided a sense of urgency and a broad range of opportunities for e-pharmacy. When you consider that India is a large nation, it is interesting to note that e-pharmacies account for barely 5 percent of the pharmaceutical business.
With the purchase of SastaSundar, Flipkart hopes to acquire a considerable proportion of the customers who depend on online pharmacies. However, the e-commerce behemoth did not disclose the amount it paid to acquire the Kolkata-based e-pharmacy startup. Sastasundar Marketplace Limited, which owns and operates SastaSundar.com, an online pharmacy, and digital healthcare
the platform will be operating as a flagship of Flipkart Health+ – a new venture of Flipkart for dealing with the online pharmacy business.
SastaSundar has a network of more than 490 pharmacies spread over India, on which they depend and from which they get genuine medicines for their customers. This company’s mission is to solve the difficulties of access to affordable and high-quality healthcare in India by supplying original items from approved sources and distributing them across the nation. SaastaSundar.com offers customers complete solutions for a wide variety of healthcare issues by using artificial intelligence and data analytics technologies and merging them with personalized counseling provided via its network.
Using the combined assets of the Flipkart Group, which include its pan-India reach and technical skills, together with SastaSundar’s deep experience, Flipkart Health+ will be able to give customers an end-to-end service in the pharmacy technology ecosystem, according to the company.
As stated in the release, “it would attempt to provide millions of Indian customers access to high-quality and affordable health care, as well as novel healthcare services like e-diagnostics and e-consultation.”
While the Flipkart Group’s efforts to address the growing consumer internet ecosystem have been successful, this new venture builds on those efforts by providing end-to-end offerings ranging from travel to healthcare at a time when digital technologies continue to democratize access to products and services.
What Flipkart Expects From Sastasundar Acquisition?
“The consumer internet ecosystem in India is proliferating as consumers recognize the opportunities and convenience that digital adoption is enabling in their lives. With growing awareness and focus on health amplified by the pandemic, there is a big opportunity and demand for affordable healthcare and ancillary offerings,” Ravi Iyer, Senior Vice President and Head -Corporate Development, Flipkart, said in a statement on the development.
As a result of our investment in SastaSundar.com, a firm that has established itself as a trusted partner for lakhs of customers via authentic items, a technology-powered platform, and an extensive network, we are thrilled to join this area. Together with our dedication to prioritizing our customers’ requirements, the synergies between the Flipkart Group and SatsaSundar.com will enable us to grow and change online healthcare in India.”
Amazon, another e-commerce behemoth in India and a direct competitor to Flipkart, has also begun delivering prescription-based medicines via its online marketplace. The service, on the other hand, was exclusively available in Banglore.