Medicine Shoppe ties up with Oriental Insurance

Mumbai: India's largest pharma retailer, The Medicine Shoppe India, subsidiary of Medicine Shoppe International has tied up with Oriental Insurance Company to offer free mediclaim to Medicine Shoppe customers.

Now on the purchase of good worth Rs5,000 from a Medicine Shoppe pharmacy a customer can avail of a free Mediclaim policy worth Rs5,000 from Oriental Insurance.

According to VN Bhargava, regional manager Oriental Insurance Company, "We hope to make a stronger dent in the market with Mediclaim and hope that more people become aware of this policy."

He said at present less than 0.5 per cent of the Indian population was covered by Mediclaim and added that he hoped that the policy would help increase awareness and sensitise more customers to the need of taking such policies.

According to Viraj Gandhi, managing director, The Medicine Shoppe India, "We have tried to add to the basket of services offered to our customers. We are now looking at states like Maharashtra, Gujarat and Goa to provide growth."

Earlier this year The Medicine Shoppe India embarked on a Rs50-crore expansion plan to increase its retail chain outlets to 500 by 2009 and to over 100 by March 2005. At present Medicine Shoope has 57 outlets.

The company plans to fund its expansion from internal accruals and through new franchisees. The company is also planning to increase its presence in the southern states of the country, mainly in Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka, where the franchisee shops' presence is comparatively low.

The franchisee chain expects these initiatives to increase its revenues of by around 45 per cent to 50 per cent during the current fiscal. Earlier, the company had tied-up with Royal Sundaram Alliance Company Ltd to provide free health insurance policies and Bajaj Allianz for personal accident insurance, in which it issued policies worth more than Rs 16 crore in the last one and half years.