Digital pharmacy firm Phlo Technologies has acquired the UK arm of US-based healthcare unicorn Truepill.
The deal makes the Glasgow-based business one of the market leaders in the provision of business-to-business pharmacy services in the UK, and follows on from its £10m Series A raise in February.
Following Truepill’s decision to focus solely on its US operations, a competitive bidding process for the UK business was announced in the autumn of 2022. Phlo emerged as the preferred bidder on account of synergies in technology infrastructure, patient care and the pharmacy services provided both for NHS and private partners.
Phlo has acquired Truepill’s partnerships with several of the UK’s most popular digital healthcare providers, including: contraceptive support platform The Lowdown; metabolic-health-focused software company Levels; gynaecological health platform Daye; contraception and intimate care business Hanx; and metabolic health platform Veri.
The transaction also includes Truepill UK’s technology stack, including a full set of Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) and prescribing technology.
Once integrated, Phlo’s technology will be able to facilitate the prescribing, dispensing and delivery of prescribed and off-the-shelf medications and treatments directly to the users of these platforms.
As part of a commercial partnership attached to the deal, Phlo has committed to support Truepill’s US partners should any of them look to launch into the UK market. Both organisations also agreed to explore further joint ventures, as and when appropriate.
This consolidation should enable Phlo to expand the geographic footprint of its operations, with plans including the launch of same-day, on-demand medication delivery in Manchester, alongside existing services in Birmingham and London.
Phlo has also acquired Truepill’s NHS patient base.
Phlo Digital Pharmacy is the challenger brand owned by Phlo Technologies which provides end-to-end NHS digital pharmacy services to patients across England.
The company now plans to increase its headcount from the existing 90 employees across the UK, with all of Truepill UK’s existing pharmacy and warehouse staff being offered jobs.
Nadeem Sarwar, founder and chief executive of Phlo, commented: “We’re delighted that this market consolidation will enable further improvements to the excellent service that Phlo offers to patients and partners, and also allow us to extend that service by welcoming new patients and partners across the country.
“Following our Series A raise, Phlo is in a stronger position than ever to lead digital transformation in the pharmacy sector and to play a pivotal role in improving health outcomes in the UK.”
Truepill UK’s managing director Shakil Ahmed said: “As Truepill made the decision to focus on the US market, our priority was to ensure our UK patients, clients and staff faced as little disruption as possible.
“Our priority was to find the right acquirer who shares Truepill’s vision and ethos of the future of pharmacy.
“In Phlo, I don’t think we could have found a better fit, and I am delighted to be continuing an ongoing commercial partnership with Phlo that will allow our US partners to launch in the UK in the future.”
Addleshaw Goddard’s corporate team in Scotland are long-standing advisers to Phlo and advised on the acquisition, while Brabners advised Truepill on the disposal.