MedAdvisor expands footprint with Sigma Healthcare as part of ePrescribing revolution

MedAdvisor ASX MDR Sigma Healthcare pharmacy digital prescription
MedAdvisor will provide customised versions of its smartphone app to Sigma Healthcare under a two-year deal.

Digital medication company MedAdvisor (ASX: MDR) has further extended its operations within the growing “ePrescribing” market, following a new two-year deal worth around $1 million per year with pharmacy retail group Sigma Healthcare (ASX: SIG).

Sigma has over 600 retail pharmacy franchise partners including Amcal, DDS, Guardian, PharmaSave, WholeLife and Chemist King pharmacy brands.

MedAdvisor’s role is to execute computer-based electronic generation, transmission and filling of medical prescriptions and facilitate the distribution of various drugs to over 12 million people across Australia.

Electronic prescribing, or ePrescribing, is rapidly overtaking the use of paper and faxed prescriptions with multiple benefits available to both healthcare professionals and patients as a result.

Sigma general manager Jeff Sells explained that Sigma is in the middle of a “transition to an ePrescribing environment” that will facilitate a streamlining of the prescription process including the use of smartphone apps and next-generation pharmacy medication management software.

Sigma and MedAdvisor syncing for growth

Currently, MedAdvisor partners with over 400 Sigma pharmacy franchise partners with the newly established agreement set to open the door for an additional 200 incremental pharmacies to be included in MedAdvisor’s network.

The company is also pushing to improve distribution capacity to serve its growing network.

Just last week, MedAdvisor signed an agreement with Kings Transport, one of Australasia’s leading metropolitan transport and logistics providers.

One of the pivotal caveats that led to Kings being selected was its ability to enable a same-day medication delivery fulfilment service to MedAdvisor’s pharmacy network.

From the 12 million customers currently being served in Australia, MedAdvisor said that around 1.2 million are already “digitally connected” either through its consumer app or an SMS reminder service and it expects more people to switch to digital means in the near future.

In total, MedAdvisor handles more than $300 million in medication orders every year.

“Sigma has been a long-term shareholder and supporter of the business and we are really pleased to formally document this agreement to help them better support their pharmacies, particularly as the market shifts with ePrescribing,” said Robert Read, chief executive officer of MedAdvisor.

Under the agreement, MedAdvisor will provide customised versions of its smartphone app made available for use by several Sigma brands and could potentially extend the deal for a further year in 2021.

MedAdvisor has claimed it now stands as the leading medication management application in Australia with an agnostic position that isn’t biased towards any particular company or brand. The company has already signed long term agreements with TerryWhite Chemmart, Chemist Warehouse and multiple Sigma franchise partners meaning it now has commercial agreements with most of the leading pharmacy chains in Australia.

According to market statistics, MedAdvisor is currently available in nearly 60% of Australian community pharmacies that collectively represent over 70% of all prescription volume in the country.

In its most recent regulatory filing, the company reported its quarterly revenue had risen by almost 19% to $2.1 million compared to the same time last year with annualised recurring revenue increasing by 4.7% in the same period.

“Patients are demanding greater convenience in their healthcare experience,” Mr Read said.

He explained that MedAdvisor already partners with the majority of Australian pharmacies and helps them deliver “unparalleled convenience” to customers which means that growing its network is essential. When combined with better distribution, the service his company offers “enables community pharmacies to deepen the vital relationship between patients and their regular pharmacist”.

News of the new deal with Sigma helped MedAdvisor shares to increase more than 6% to $0.052 in morning trade.