PharmEasy Becomes The First-ever Unicorn To Acquire a Listed Indian Company


PharmEasy’s parent company — API Holdings Limited — announced it has signed definitive documents to acquire a 66.1 percent stake in Thyrocare Technologies from its promoters. With this, PharmEasy will become the first-ever unicorn to acquire a listed Indian company. The acquiring company said it will buy shares at Rs 1,300 a piece, which is a 10 percent discount to the last closing price on Friday. The total cost of the transaction will be Rs 4,546 crore.

Currently, A Velumani (Chairman & MD of Thyrocare) and affiliates hold 66.14 percent of the company. A Velumani will be separately acquiring a minority non-controlling stake of less than 5 percent in API Holdings as part of a series of equity investments by existing and new investors.

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.

The acquisition fits well with PharmEasy, which aspires to be a 360 degrees digital health player and not just an e-pharmacy. “With Thyrocare we will strengthen our offline presence and get more partners on board. We would like to have Dr. V (Velumani) as an advisor on board and help us navigate this journey,” said Dhaval Shah, cofounder at PharmEasy. Shah said that they will retain the Thyrocare brand in the diagnostics business.

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PharmEasy, founded by Dharmil Sheth, Dhaval Shah, Harsh Parekh, Hardik Dedhia, and Siddharth Shah, claims to be India’s number one online pharmacy and diagnostics brand. PharmEasy has an online pharmacy and diagnostics brand, RetailIO – a B2B pharma marketplace and seller, and DocOn – a consultation and EMR platform. The company has a base of 12 million consumers, a network of 6,000+ digital consultation clinics, and 90,000+ partner retailers across the country.

It currently serves over one million patients for their pharmacy and diagnostics needs and conducts 300,000 consultations on a monthly basis. On the other hand, Thyrocare is one of the leading diagnostics solution providers by volume, performing over 110 million tests annually.

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.

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.

Also, Read This: Tata Digital Has Acquired A Majority Stake In Gurugram-based 1mg



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