Online medicine delivery startups, such as PharmEasy, 1mg, Netmeds and LifCare, are racing ahead of the pack by raising large sums of capital and putting pressure on their peers to either keep raising cash or sell out.
PharmEasy recently raised more than USD 50 million in two tranches, while 1mg is in advanced talks to close a USD 60-80 million round, according to two people familiar with the developments. Netmeds, which recently secured USD 35 million, is in talks with investors to raise more money, another person familiar with the matter said. LifCare raised around USD 11 million in July from the likes of Saif Partners and Nexus Venture Partners.
Investor bullishness in this sector comes in the wake of the union health ministry issuing in September draft rules on the sale of drugs through e-pharmacies with final regulations expected by the end of this month. However, according to a Times Of India report, Delhi high court ordered on Wednesday a ban on the sale of online medicines by e-pharmacies, making it a risky investment.