7-year-old e-pharmacy startup Pharmeasy acquires majority stake in 25-year-old Thyrocare

Laxitha Mundhra
New Update
7-year-old e-pharmacy startup Pharmeasy acquires majority stake in 25-year-old Thyrocare

Pharmeasy recently also turned into a Unicorn Startup, acquired competitor Medlife, and now became the first startup to acquire a listed company. Thus, we can easily state that Pharmeasy's ambition is not “taking it easy”. (Cue: the company's tagline is: Take it easy, Pharmeasy). In a one-of-its-kind deal, PharmEasy, a startup, has acquired a majority stake (66.1%) in the publicly-listed Indian company, Thyrocare for over Rs 4,500 crore. Pharmeasy parent company API's subsidiary and acquirer - Docon Technologies - will also make an open offer for an additional 26% stake. Further, Thyrocare promoter A Velumani and affiliates will sell their stake at Rs 1,300 per share.


The Pharmeasy-Thyrocare deal comes at a time when the weights of the e-pharmacy market are slowing tipping in the direction of conglomerates such as Tata, Reliance and Amazon. Tata acquired 1mg; Amazon opened Amazon Pharmacy and Reliance acquired a majority stake in NetMeds for Rs 600 crore. The market, apart from these big companies, is also home to many small e-pharma companies. Some names include EasyMedico, Practo, mFine and Myra. This acquisition of Thyrocare, and a subsequent IPO, makes Pharmeasy one of the most probable startup to many.

Pharmeasy's contribution to e-pharmacy

The pandemic changed the game of the e-pharma players in India. From the last mile-delivery system to providing health checkups, diagnostics and free doctor checkups, every startup in the e-pharmacy is expanding horizontally. In such a time, when people have moved to online purchase of medicines and medical devices, PharmEasy’s vertical expansion only boosts its standing. In September, CCI approved the merger of online pharmacy Medlife with PharmEasy. This was the first major consolidation in the sector since the entry of big players like Reliance Industries and Amazon.


Later, the company raised $350 million from Prosus Ventures and TPG Growth LLC at a $1.5 billion valuation. Thus, it became the seventh unicorn in 2021. With the MedLife acquisition, it aims to add more teleconsultations to link up customers with the 60,000 brick-and-mortar pharmacies and 4,000 doctors, that it already has on its books. Now, the company is looking to go for a public IPO by 2021.

Thyrocare is one of India’s leading diagnostics solution provider in India. It performs over 110 million tests annually and has a network of 3,330 collection centres in 2,000 Indian towns. For Pharmeasy, diagnostics account for about 5% of total annual sale. Thus, the acquisition will help the company ramp up its diagnostics offering to a large userbase.

Details about the acquisition


Siddharth Shah, CEO, API Holdings commented in a press statement, “We are delighted to be partnering with Thyrocare. 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. We aim to deliver all outpatient healthcare products and services to every Indian within 24 hours.”

Dr A Velumani, Chairman and MD of Thyrocare, further said, “I am excited about this relationship; unique of its kind in the Indian healthcare industry. The unique reach and strength of Thyrocare in diagnostics, blended with a young and dynamic team of PharmEasy, will bring in better healthcare solutions for the common man nationwide.”

JM Financial and Kotak Investment Banking were API Holding’s M&A advisors. They will also advise on the open offer as well, reports suggest.

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