Dharmil Sheth of Pharmeasy for The Termsheet Podcast

How Dharmil built India’s largest ePharmacy – Pharmeasy?

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Curious case of ePharmacies in India

Indian retail Pharma market has been growing at a brisk pace of 15-20% for years now and has become a USD 20 Billion market in 2019. However, the market has remained fairly resistant to any disruption that is until the advent of ePharmacy companies such as Pharmeasy, 1MG, Netmeds and a few others. These companies saw an opportunity to streamline the complex Pharma market that includes numerous manufacturers of drugs, over 80,000 distributors and over 800,000 pharmacies spread across the breadth and length of this country.

But, the excitement didn’t last long. These companies had to fight battles on two fronts: 1) with each other and 2) with regulatory authorities. In the ensuing few years one company, Pharmeasy, emerged battle hardened and stronger than before. Pharmeasy processes between 38,000 and 40,000 orders a day and has a presence in every nook and corner of India.

But, Pharmeasy’s arrival on the stage as an unlikely giant hasn’t happened overnight. A lot of it is to do with the grit of its founders, Dharmil Sheth and Dhaval Shah. So, I am very excited to bring today’s episode with Dharmil to find out how he succeeded in weathering numerous storms and preparing to duking it out with eCommerce giants.

First Impressions

Dharmil is a very soft spoken person with a calm demeanor. You will be forgiven if you thought Dharmil had decades of experience. But, Dharmil is barely 31 years old who grew up in house of 16 people with middle class values.

Time and again, I am surprised by the humility of such accomplished founders. Dharmil is no exception. Despite his meteoric rise he remains grounded and attributes his success to many factors. I am especially thankful to him for finding time from his busy schedule. He was stuck at Lonavala amidst the Covid 19 lockdown and with limited internet connectivity. So we battled through intermittent connectivity to tape today’s episode.

In this episode…

I covered a vast variety of topics with Dharmil from how he came up with the idea to building Pharmeasy to raising hundreds of millions of dollars. He also opened up about his challenges building the company over the past 5 years. Catch this and many more interesting musings in this episode.

A special mention to Anoop Polavaram who introduced me to Dharmil. Thanks Anoop!

Do checkout some of the previous episodes with PC Musthafa of ID Fresh Food & Sameer Maheshwari of Healthkart.

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