Ayala buys control of Visayas drugstore chain
Ayala Healthcare Holdings, Inc. (AC Health), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ayala Corporation, is acquiring the controlling stake in a drugstore chain in the Visayas.
In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, Ayala said AC Health has entered into a share purchase agreement with Jasminum Corporation, for the proposed acquisition of a 75 percent stake in Negros Grace.
Negros Grace, based in Bacolod City and founded in 1971, owns and operates over 70 drugstores across Central and Western Visayas.
“This transaction enables AC Health to expand its portfolio in pharmacies, particularly in the Visayas region,” Ayala said.
A Share Purchase Agreement was executed on December 6, 2018, the closing of which is subject to the fulfillment of certain conditions precedent and to securing any necessary regulatory approval.
AC Health had earlier invested in an early stage startup firm that allows customers to order medicine online and have these delivered directly to them.
Ayala said AC Health invested in Wellbridge Health, Inc. which owns and operates MedGrocer, an FDA-licensed ePharmacy and medicine benefits management service.
Ayala said “the investment is part of AC Health’s overall strategy to increase accessibility and affordability in healthcare. AC Health seeks to seed disruptive healthcare solutions that improve efficiency and integration.”
“The investment of AC Health into MedGrocer fits well with both our pharmacy and health tech aspirations,” said AC Health Chief Executive Officer Paolo F. Borromeo.
He noted that, “on the pharmacy side, we are exploring new ways to reach the consumer and deliver affordable medicine; on the health tech side, we are looking to build a portfolio of innovative technology solutions across the continuum of care.”
MedGrocer’s online platform allows patients to compare prices and obtain essential information for their medications prior to purchase.
All medicine are FDA-certified, and transactions are verified by a licensed pharmacist. In addition to serving individuals, MedGrocer also provides medicine for the clinics of their corporate clients.