Home / Companies / News /  PharmEasy buys 66% stake in Thyrocare

Online pharmacy PharmEasy’s parent will buy a 66.1% stake in diagnostic chain Thyrocare Technologies for 4,546 crore, in a sign that Indians are increasingly using mobile apps for their healthcare needs.

Docon Technologies Pvt. Ltd, a unit of PharmEasy’s parent API Holdings Ltd, will acquire the majority stake in the diagnostic chain at 1,300 per share, a 10.2% discount to Thyrocare’s closing share price on Friday. The acquisition will trigger an open offer for the purchase of an additional 26% stake in the company.

The pandemic’s disruptions have transformed how Indians access diagnostic tests and purchase medicines in the past year
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The pandemic’s disruptions have transformed how Indians access diagnostic tests and purchase medicines in the past year

The open offer will also be made at 1,300 per share, which could cost Docon 1,780 crore if public shareholders tender their shares. The Thyrocare stock surged 6.23% to 1,448.05 on BSE. The announcement was made after the end of trading in Mumbai.

The pandemic’s disruptions have transformed how Indians access diagnostic tests and purchase medicines in the past year. Consumers have embraced online pharmacies, preferring to order tests through apps rather than visiting diagnostic centres, making companies such as Thyrocare reliant on the apps run by third parties to aggregate customers.

Thyrocare chairman A. Velumani will acquire a stake of less than 5% in API Holdings Ltd as part of a series of equity investments by existing and new investors of API.

“We will provide a world-class customer experience in diagnostics, rivalling our pharmacy experience by leveraging technology and building on top of the massive scale and truly pan-India presence of Thyrocare. It is our aim to deliver all out-patient healthcare products and services to every Indian within 24 hours," API Holdings chief executive officer Siddharth Shah said in a statement.

API Holdings also owns RetailIO, India’s largest business-to-business pharma marketplace, and Docon, a doctor consultation platform.

“The unique reach and strength of Thyrocare in diagnostics blended with the young and dynamic team of PharmEasy will bring in better healthcare solutions for the common man nationwide," Velumani said in the note.

This is PharmEasy’s third acquisition after Ascent Health and Wellness and e-pharmacy firm Medlife. The acquisition of Medlife has made PharmEasy India’s largest online pharmacy. The Thyrocare acquisition will further consolidate its position in the market.

The deal will lead to synergies for both companies, allowing them to accelerate delivery of high-quality diagnostic and out-patient department services, PharmEasy said.

Over the past year, there have been various mergers and acquisitions in the e-pharmacy sector amid the pandemic. Apart from the PharmEasy-Medlife merger, Tata Digital acquired 1mg while Reliance Retail acquired Netmeds.

PharmEasy is backed by investors such as Temasek, CDPQ and LGT Lightrock.

JM Financial advised PharmEasy on the acquisition and the open offer.

“This deal brings together India’s leading digital health platform and one of the most cost-efficient diagnostics solution providers to create an unbeatable integrated digital health platform. This partnership will create tremendous opportunities and synergies for consumers, doctors and suppliers," Vishal Kampani, managing director of JM Financial Group, said in a statement.

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