The medicine distribution market in Europe is diverse, with distinct legal restrictions varying from country to country. In some countries, drug manufacturers are not allowed to sell directly to pharmacies and distribution is exclusive to retail players. As a consequence, the market is fragmented and medicine producers cannot have relationships with the smaller pharmacies. It is almost impossible to have a strategic plan or identify simple ways to offer promotions and discounts.
Looking at this scenario, a multinational healthcare corporation identified an opportunity to build a digital channel to work directly with small pharmacies. This B2B e-commerce platform would serve as a communication channel and offer a set of robust online tools to 200,000 pharmacies across Europe. The platform would also provide online training courses for the retailers to engage and familiarize them with the multinational healthcare corporation product portfolio. The goal was to cover 26% of the European pharma sector by the end of 2016 and increase net trade sales in the region by 6% to 45 million Euros by 2017.
The company had a legacy digital sales channel responsible for the distribution of products to pharmacy chains and a separate platform for training retailer customers. The new platform would be developed keeping in mind the existing channel with key consumers, the major distributors. It needed to be safe and flexible, with more information about the product releases and promotions. The multinational healthcare corporation wanted an e-learning area for the pharmacy teams.
Another requirement was the integration with existing point of sales and CRM systems, like SAP and Salesforce, providing pharmacies with a complete view of product performance by region, enabling expansion strategies in those areas. Mobile access to the system was essential, with owners of small and medium pharmacies utilizing tablets and smartphones for business management. All of this needed to be delivered without compromising the user experience.
How CI&T Executed
CI&T led the technical design and implementation teams for the sales and educational platform for pharmacists, which was fully developed on Drupal platform, integrating SalesForce and SAP technologies with a content management feature, pricing, and sales management.
The platform was developed in 30,000 project hours in 15 months by a team of 17 people across the UK and Brazil. It offers scalable and localized architecture for multiple sites and languages, respecting the legal requirements and language of each of the countries and being rolled out globally.
With the delivery of a single unified platform for content management, pricing and sales, the multinational healthcare provider could access information and aligned strategic and business objectives across the European continent.
Released in June 2016 in France, Belgium, and Luxembourg, this pharmaceutical sales tool reached US $1 million in sales in the first three weeks of operation, and more than 1.500 orders. 55 training programs were executed in the same period. The multinational healthcare corporation had 27% of its customers in Belgium and 22% in France using the new platform within the same period.
Within the first month of operation, the platform proved to be robust and stable.
The Case at a Glimpse
Develop a new B2B relationship channel between a multinational healthcare corporation and potential new customers across Europe—200,000 pharmacies with each country having distinct legal restrictions.
CI&T completed the technical design and implementation of the platform for sales and education, fully developed on Drupal platform, integrating SalesForce and SAP technologies, with content management feature, pricing and sales management. All this in a completely online solution from end to end and without outsourcing solutions.
Released in July 2016 in France, Belgium, and Luxembourg, the sales and educational platform for pharmacists reached US $1 million in sales and registered more than 900 drugstores in the first three weeks of operation. There were also 55 training programs executed in the same period.