(Source: Inside Retail Philippines | 22 April 2016)
Generika Drugstore is eying aggressive expansion in the country’s far-flung areas – and possibly abroad into Southeast Asia.
Generika is country’s third-largest player, half-owned by retail giant Ayala. In 2015 the Ayala group, through its Ayala Healthcare Holdings Inc., acquired 50 per cent of the pharmacy business from cofounder, Frenchman Julien Bello.
Teodoro Ferrer, president of Generika, said the company plans to boost its 600 stores with 152 more in 2016, and an average of 100 stores annually over the next few years.
“We need to grow further to more than 1000 stores in less than five years. We also need to focus the product line to include food supplements and also focus on healthcare and wellness, and not just on medicines,” Ferrer said.
He said the aggressive strategy for a company the size of Generika, founded 12 years ago, could not be compared with opening a branch of a convenience store that sold mostly food and grocery items.
“You need to have approvals from the local government, from the FDA [Food and Drug Administration]; hire a licensed pharmacist; and then look for the right franchise owner that will take care of your store.”
Ferrer said the company will put branches in far-flung areas of the country where he believes its services are needed.
Generika now owns about 42 per cent of its network, since previously it didn’t have the capital to own stores, which cost about P1.2 million to P1.5 million to build. The rest of the stores are operated as franchises.
“Now that our profit is increasing and Ayala group has come in, we can now expand company-owned stores.”