Pharmacy startup 1mg raises $15m Series B from Maverick, Sequoia India

A money lender counts Indian rupee currency notes at his shop in Ahmedabad Photo: Reuters

Healthcare start-up 1mg Technologies Pvt. Ltd has raised Rs.100 crore in a Series B funding round from Maverick Capital Ventures, the venture capital arm of US-based hedge fund Maverick Capital, besides existing investors Sequoia Capital and Omidyar Network, the company said in a statement.

1mg had earlier raised $6 million from Sequoia Capital, Intel Capital, Omidyar Network and Deep Kalra, co-founder of travel portal MakeMyTrip, in April last year.

The fresh funds will be deployed to expand the online pharmacy and diagnostics verticals as well launch digital health products such as smart prescriptions and personalised health feeds for consumers, the company said.

“India has one of the highest populations of chronic patients in the world and yet access to quality and affordable healthcare is limited,” said Prashant Tandon, co-founder and chief executive at 1mg.

“Our app allows customers to access knowledge about substitutes that can often save 80-90% on healthcare bills. Additionally our e-pharmacy platform enables users to transact and purchase these medicines and have them home-delivered. Our more recently launched e-diagnostics service aims to bring a similar transparency to the lab tests market,” he added.

1mg was earlier called HealthkartPlus, the generic drug search business of Healthkart, an online vendor of health products run by Bright Lifecare Pvt. Ltd. In April last year, HealthkartPlus was spun off into a separate entity and rebranded 1mg.

While Tandon, one of the founders of Healthkart, took charge at 1mg, co-founder Sameer Maheshwari continues to head Healthkart.

Tandon said revenue of 1mg grew about eight times in the last 12 months.

The company operates an online marketplace for medicines, besides facilitating doctor appointments and diagnostic test booking.

According to its website, 1mg has a database of about 100,000 medicines with detailed information on their side effects and composition. It also allows consumers to do a price comparison among multiple brands of medicines with the same composition.

This is Maverick’s first investment in the Indian healthcare space. The venture capital firm has invested in a number of healthcare start-ups globally, including California-based Collective Health and San Fransisco-headquartered Castlight Health.

The latest tranche of funding will help 1mg to fend off competition from rivals including Sequoia Capital-backed Practo Technologies Pvt. Ltd, which is also the best funded homegrown healthcare start-up, having raised $124 million from investors such as Tencent, Sofina, Google Capital and Altimeter Capital.

This article was first published on Livemint.com

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.