The Mexican digital pharmacy startup Prixz closed its Series A with a valuation of more than 100 million dollars, which places it in the prelude to the Mexican unicorns, the company revealed to Forbes Mexico.
With this round of capital, the company seeks to consolidate itself as the largest digital health platform in Latin America, speed up the development of its distribution centers and accelerate its growth in Mexico and expand to Colombia.
“Not only are we well on our way to becoming the next Mexican unicorn, we are also continuing to grow by leaps and bounds to be the favorite health superapp for our patients. Thanks to this round of financing, we will be able to expand our market not only to all of Mexico, but we will enter other Latin American countries”, said Erick Ramírez de Arellano, commercial and marketing director of Prixz, about the round led by SV LATAM Capital.
In Mexico, when a patient goes to fill a prescription, the most common scenario is that they have to go to several pharmacies to get everything they need. This limited access to medicines in the country was what prompted Prixz to move from being a last-mile logistics provider of traditional pharmacy chains to becoming a digital health startup with the purpose of having the widest health catalog in the ecosystem.
“A week before the pandemic we decided to change our business model because the pharmacy chains were not fulfilling an objective that we considered important for any citizen, which was to be able to have complete prescriptions. This is how Prixz was born with the goal of having the largest catalog of products and services at a fair price and being able to deliver them when and where the patient requires it”, says Sergio Pérez, co-founder and digital director of Prixz.
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Today, the Mexican company has a catalog with an inventory that exceeds 15,000 SKUs —the unique reference numbers given to each product—, which is “three to four times more than what a traditional pharmacy has,” he says. Perez.
This catalog is supplied with our own logistics from around 20 warehouses known as Last Mile Distribution Centers (CRUMS).
With this model, Prixz’s growth rates have been up to 800% year-over-year and Pérez expects to maintain this pace by 2022.
“The pandemic accelerated our growth. People took away the fear of buying online and receiving a person at home to do a medical procedure”, says the entrepreneur.
As the digital patient evolved with the pandemic, Prixz did too. According to Pérez, the health emergency made the startup more empathic with its users and its mission of closing the digital gap in health. At that time, traditional pharmacies had the doors open to their adjacent offices and that is how Prixz decided to also incorporate online medical assistance into its service.
“In Mexico City it is much easier to access medicine, but if you go to Chiapas or another state, access is very restricted. In addition to digitalization, the demand of patients has been a driver for the growth of the digital health industry and that is healthy because it is improving the quality of life of people in the country”, says Pérez.
According to a report by the Mexican Institute for Competitiveness (IMCO), the lack of access to medicines is a latent risk that can have a far-reaching impact in Mexico, where the population “is aging and whose epidemiological profile is increasingly charged towards chronic non-communicable diseases that require expensive and long-term procedures”.
In its catalog, Prixz today has medicines for sale that do not require a prescription to be purchased, known as Fraction VI; as well as those cataloged in Section IV, which are those that do require a prescription, but it is not necessary for the provider to withdraw it at the time of purchase.
“We are pioneers in introducing these latest drugs in marketplaces such as Mercado Libre and Amazon, which is in line with our goal of expanding access to all,” says Ramírez de Arellano.
“Before, people thought of calling restaurants to order food at home, but today we have in mind an application to take food home. Now we want that if someone thinks of health, the first thing that comes to mind is Prixz”, she adds.
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