We all seek medical care in case of ill health by consulting doctors. Along with that, we also look for medical lab services for different tests that are prescribed by doctors. One major concern for people looking for healthcare facilities is to find the right providers for all medical requirements i.e., diagnostic centres, specialist doctors, and availability of medicines in the easiest way. It is quite difficult for people to physically visit healthcare practitioners due to their busy schedule of work. What if we get all the above facilities i.e., lab testing, doctor consulting, medicines, etc. under one roof? People in most of the urban areas, now prefer online platforms to meet all their healthcare and fitness needs. Using these online platforms, they can source their prescribed medicines and lab tests from one place only rather than physically visiting different pharmacy vendors or labs. One such India’s biggest online healthcare or E-Health platform is “Medlife” pharmacy that provides hassle-free and quality healthcare services by facilitating all medical services i.e., home-booking of different diagnostic tests, delivery of quality medicines, online consultation with doctors, wellness products, etc. next to our doorstep. For the convenience of people, Medlife offers a mobile app, which is both easy to use and user friendly and using which people can order medicines that are delivered at their home. It operates in more than 2500 cities in India and has own labs in different cities like Bengaluru, Kolkata, Delhi, Mumbai, and others. The central laboratory of the company is in Bengaluru.
A Brief Background of Medlife
Medlife was introduced by Prashant Singh and Tushar Kumar in 2014. The idea to launch Medlife came in the mind of Tushar when he found that it was really difficult to visit various medical stores to look for medicines that were prescribed to his parents. Once he had to go to a medical store, which was 40 km far from his store to buy the required medicines. This was the time when he observed the huge gap in the healthcare market in India as compared to overseas. In Abroad, he was able to manage things online i.e., online appointment with the doctor, Electronic prescription of a doctor, online medicine booking, etc. Even it was easy to know the list of pharmacies where the stock of medicines would be available. This huge difference made him realize that the healthcare system in India is required to be reviewed by using technology. So, Tushar thought to come up with a platform through which customers can get access to all types of healthcare facilities i.e., storing and recording prescriptions of doctors and clinic visits, to place an order of medicines online and home delivery of those medicines, to schedule diagnostic lab tests, and consulting doctors online. To give his idea a real shape, he co-partnered with his friend Prashant Singh and founded Medlife in November 2014, which is an online healthcare platform aimed at sorting out inadequacies in the Indian healthcare delivery system by using advanced technology.
Initial Journey and Further Growth
The journey of Medlife was started with an initial investment of $15 million and later on, it got $30 million funding from promoters and family capital. It was started as an online drug delivery platform or e-pharmacy that used to facilitate doctors to manage and store their patient’s records in digital format. With time, the company diversified its business into an online consultation service of doctors, lab services, and wellness products. It also launched a mobile app through which customers can access and utilize all its services. Medlife received an award for the “Best pharma delivery online company of India” in 2018 and the “Best healthcare Startup” award in 2019.
Mergers & Acquisitions
- November 2018: EClinic24/7’s technology was acquired by Medlife for providing quick medical assistance to customers like the consultation of general physician and video or voice call on Medlife portal.
- February 2019: Acquisition of a digital healthcare platform “Medlabz” and a service company i.e., diagnostics at home was initiated by Medlife. The purpose behind this acquisition was to strengthen the diagnostic business of Medlife through the integration of technology platforms and the strength of logistics of the above companies.
- May 2019: Medlife acquired Myran Medicines (an online pharmacy app) through which the purchase of medicines became fast as it’s a combination of both technology and operations.
Business Model of Medlife
A Business Model of an organization is considered as a structure that is based on concepts that support the feasibility of a product or organization and demonstrates how an organization works, generates income, and how it moves forward to achieve its objectives. So a business model comprises all the processes and policies that an organization adopts and pursues. Peter Druker, the management guru has defined a business model as a model that is expected to explain your customer, a value that you can add-on or create for your customers and strategies you can adopt to do that at reasonable prices. Now let’s discuss the above elements mentioned in the business model canvas of Medlife in detail.
Now let’s discuss the above elements mentioned in the business model canvas of Medlife in detail.
1. Value Proposition
Medlife is a complete healthcare solution that brings all stakeholders under a single roof i.e.,doctors, lab services, patients, and pharmacies. It offers value to its customers by providing superior healthcare-related services like:
- Free delivery at doorstep: The Company delivers medicines at a customer’s home both in a safe and quick manner. Cash on delivery option is available for convenience. Medlife receives these medicines directly from manufacturers and also, these are thoroughly authenticated and quality is being checked before dispensing to customers by the pharmacist of the company.
- Attractive discounts and diversified product range: Apart from facilitating all the medicines as per the patient’s prescription, it also provides medicines at a discounted price. The deals of the company are unique to its competitors. Irrespective of the price that a customer pays, Medlife prefers to return it by providing attractive discounts on medicine through Medlife coupon codes.
- Easy steps of placing an order: Customers can place an order in a quick way in three easy steps i.e., Prescription uploading, collection of original prescription by the company from their home, and delivery of medicines at home only. All this process takes a maximum of 24 hours.
- Genuine medicine suppliers: The healthcare products of Medlife are very genuine that are taken from authorized dealers directly. Only genuine suppliers are considered for sourcing medicines. It’s warehousing and logistics provide world-class practices in order to preserve the efficacy of medicines. Also, only qualified pharmacists are allowed to dispense medicines.
- Order tracking facility: Customers are able to get live updates regarding their orders placed in the company on their mobile phone itself. The unique features of this facility include getting live updates of the status of the order by SMS facility and push notifications, separate sections to view all orders i.e., My orders, and customer support centre for any query or assistance related to order tracking.
- Mobile app facility for services: Medlife provides a mobile app that is a one-stop-shop solution for all healthcare services and by using it customers can access all its major services. Using the app, doctors can both make and store records of patients online. The app also provides different other services like online consultation with doctors, Diagnostic lab services, and Wellness products. Moreover, this app is simple in its functioning so that users can operate it easily and customers are not required to go outside to seek medical assistance.
- Online doctor consulting: Medlife gives a platform to consult with doctors online within an hour. It appoints only experienced, highly qualified and verified doctors who also have received high ratings and consistently positive feedback from patients.
Below are the advantages of online doctor consulting services of Medlife:
- 24/7 availability of doctors: People can consult specialist doctors anytime as 24/7 availability is there.
- Second Opinions: Medlife supports its customers by giving the facility to take the second opinion anytime on their diagnosis or an expert’s view on lab reports.
- Transparent and reasonable pricing: Doctor’s consultation charges are inclusive of 7 days follow-ups. Even no hidden cost is there.
- Consultation through different modes: Medlife provides doctor consultation services in different modes i.e., through video or audio or chat. Customers can choose anyone based upon their convenience.
- Post consultation support: Company also ensures free follow-ups after consultations for the duration of one week. Customers can get in touch with doctors and monitor their health progress.
- Confidentiality of records: All the transactions through Medlife app are fully secured and provide smooth access to medical records to customers.
- OTC healthcare products: Medlife has more than 25k OTC (Over the Counter) products and to shop them online, no doctor sheet is required. The company is authorized suppliers of medical devices, masks, health supplements, sanitizers, etc. Home delivery is available for all the products.
- Booking of lab tests: Medlife services also include booking of diagnostic tests online at its labs and sample collection services at home only. So there is no need to visit a lab and one can get a report online within 12-48 hrs. It is a very easy process at Medlife as customers can utilize their user-friendly mobile app to choose different comprehensive packages of health check-ups with just a few clicks.
The unique advantages of using this facility through Medlife are as below:
- The labs of Medlife are fully automated and NABL accredited. Also, labs are of international quality standards.
- Customers have choices to choose the body check-up packages ass the company offers a varied collection.
- All processes and steps of services taken are notified through the app.
- Collecting samples from a customer’s home is quite convenient and hassle-free.
- Referring bonus: Medlife provides referral bonus benefits to its customers who want to refer their friends and family members. Customers get attractive discounts on their orders once the order delivery of their referrals is successful.
- Integrated healthcare solutions: Apart from providing online delivery of healthcare solutions like medicines, diagnostic services, etc.; Medlife also facilitates its customers by providing the full healthcare package. It integrates different aspects of healthcare and provides the whole healthcare ecosystem to people so that they can be diagnosed on time and get effective treatment.
2. Customer Segments
Medlife caters to the healthcare needs of all types of customers. Mostly, their customers are in the age group of 26-86 years. From the total customer-base of Medlife, 60% of customers are from the country’s top 30 cities and rest 40% of customers from others. The customer segments of the brand are as under:
- Patients: Who look for different healthcare facilities like online doctor consultation, lab test services, prescribed medicines, healthcare products, etc. Also, people looking for home delivery of medicine are part of their customers.
- Doctors: Who want to reach more patients without any subscription fee or any hidden cost. Medlife offers below advantages to doctors as its customers:
- Practice as per convenience: Using Medlife online platform, doctors can practise anywhere and anytime. They can stay-in-touch with patients irrespective of their locations and can consult them over video or audio chat, e-mail, or phone. This way, Medlife facilitates doctors to enhance their patient base.
- Digital and valid prescription facility: With this service, doctors can provide detailed consultation reports or prescriptions to patients that are printable, easy-to-generate, and valid too.
- Digital record maintenance: Medlife provides security to doctors and their patients through e-medical records that are fully secured. All the interactions between doctors and patients are captured in an efficient way and easily available for follow-ups and to consult again.
- Diagnostic labs: Different testing labs also take services of Medlife for providing their lab testing facilities to customers through the online platform of Medlife.
- Corporates: Medlife provides various wellness solutions to corporate for the health and wellness of both employer and employees. These wellness services include:
- Health checkups: This contains the complete health checkup for an organization’s employees within their budget.
- Dashboard for corporate: This is a platform through which organizations can view, trace, and monitor organization health.
- Wellness services: Medlife also offers lots of other wellness services like diet charts, yoga, etc. to take care of the health of employees.
3. Key Partners
- Partner Labs: Medlife has own diagnostic labs as well as partner labs i.e. Bioline Labs that support in serving more patients and maintaining quality reporting.
- Doctors: Doctors are also key partners of Medlife for e-consultation services to customers. Patients, who are seeking online consultation or not able to visit a doctor physically, can approach partnered doctors anytime and by sitting at any location. This is also feasible for doctors as they can consult patients in a convenient way.
- Franchise Partners: Different agents who support Medlife by helping customers in buying medicine and other healthcare services of the brand online through a way of medicine point.
- Affiliate Partners: These partners include a different app or website or bloggers who advertise the website link of Medlife on their app or blog or website, and thus help the brand in targeting their customers. They earn a commission based on each purchase transaction of their audience.
- Ride-Hailing companies: Medlife has recently partnered with Ride-hailing companies like Uber for the smooth and fast delivery of medicines and prescriptions during lockdown (due to Covid-19 pandemic) in 5 cities in India i.e., Kolkatta, Pune, Jaipur, Hyderabad, and Lucknow.
- Snapdeal as a Partner: Snapdeal, which is an e-commerce platform has also partnered with Medlife recently. This facilitates online medicine order facilities to users of Snapdeal through a valid prescription. The delivery staff of Medlife will deliver the customer’s order at his/her home within 24 hrs. Also, Snapdeal users can have the option of COVID-19 testing at their home itself once patients are eligible through the partnership with Medlife.
- Insurance Partner: Medlife has a partnership with insurance companies too to offer healthcare facilities to their customers that are affordable as well through its online platform. Like, they partnered with Aditya Birla Health Insurance for delivering cashless medicines to the eligible customers.
4. Key Resources
- Website and Mobile app: The website of Medlife i.e., medlife.com, provides all information related to its products and services. One can utilize their mobile app also to avail of any type of facility related to healthcare. The website basically acts as an online pharmacy of Medlife that makes the delivery of healthcare services affordable and simple. Medlife ensures this by bringing all stakeholders such as doctors, customers, diagnostic labs, pharmacists, on a single platform.
- Medlife Labs: Medlife offers full automated diagnostic labs of the highest quality that are barcoded with quality standards of the international level.
- Manpower or staff: Both technical and non-technical staff of Medlife is well experienced and qualified. The brand has the right mix of employees with vast technical knowledge and industry-specific experience.
- AI-ML Technology: Medlife is a tech-driven company that uses Artificial intelligence and machine learning to develop technical solutions for faster delivery of its services to customers.
5. Key Activities
Main activities of Medlife include:
- Advertisement and Promotional Activities: Television and newspaper ads are the main sources of Ad campaigns and promotional activities of Medlife. One of the television campaign launched by the company in 2018 was “Lafaddu Matt Bano” that had a great impact in revenue generation of Medlife.
- Online Healthcare Services: Medlife is involved in providing a platform for online healthcare products and services to customers like doctor consultation, lab tests, delivery of medicines, wellness products, etc
- Website: Medlife has all relevant information available on its website. Also, all services and products can be availed through its website i.e., medlife.com
- Social media: Medlife is actively using social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. and updates its offerings regularly on these.
- Medlife App: Medlife has a mobile app to offer convenience and fast service to its customers. The app is user friendly and using which customers can get their ordered medicines delivered at their home. Moreover, all types of over-the-counter (OTC) products are available, which can be browsed easily in a wide range of categories for instant order.
7. Customer Relationship
- Medlife customer-centric approach is aimed at strong customer relationship building. They are able to retain their customers by offering the best value for their money in terms of superior quality products and services on time.
- Their customer support staff is available 24/7 to provide assistance to customers. Also, customers can contact them for booking of home-based sample collection appointment. Medlife insures that report is generated within 24-48 hrs.
- The sales staff of Medlife is available to make customers aware of the services related to e-pharmacy and the benefits of making online orders of medicines.
- Also, the company’s approach to AI (Artificial intelligence) based chatbots are there for better and fast customer services.
8. Revenue Streams
The revenue of Medlife for 2019 was reported as Rs. 364.76 crore by the company. This revenue is more than double revenue in 2018. Out of Rs. 364.76 crore revenue, more than 80% of revenue came from the sale of goods i.e., Rs. 318.55 crore through selling medicines and related products. Sale of service section revenue has also contributed to the revenue of Medlife. For instance, lab and e-consultation services generated 44.84 crore in revenue. The revenue from other income sources stood at Rs. 1.37 crore in 2019.
9. Cost Structure and Competitor Review
Medlife overall expenditure or costing on various activities was Rs. 768.37 crore. The break-up of this expenditure under different costing heads are as under:
The main competitors of Medlife are Netmeds, 1mg, Practo, PharmEasy, Zoylo, Lybrate, Medplussmart, etc. Medlife has secured a leading position among its competitors for providing competent value-added services by it’s a complete range of services such as online consultation with doctors, lab tie-ups, patient record maintenance, healthcare-related blogs, customer support, etc..
Recapitulating, Medlife is an online platform of India, which provides services related to pharmacy, diagnostics, and e-consultation. Medlife is becoming a household name due to its strong advertising and promotional policies. Along with that, Medlife focuses on meeting the expectations of patients with complete competence. Medlife also expands its vertical and horizontal dimensions by mergers and acquisition which inturn makes the company profitable and flourishing.