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Pharmacy2U reports 'dramatically improved' financial results for 2020/21

A combination of factors “dramatically improved [Pharmacy2U’s] profitability” in the 12 months to March 31, 2021, its financial documents have suggested. 

The online pharmacy’s profit before tax stood at £100,000 in the financial year ending March 31, 2021, compared to losses amounting to £7.2 million using the same metric the previous year, according to its financial report, which was submitted to Companies House this week (September 7).

This result was achieved through a combination of factors, including “significant improvements in operational efficiency” and lowered marketing costs per patients, according to the report.

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the company faced costs exceeding £4m, which Pharmacy2U said were “necessary to protect our employees and customers and comprised mainly of staff costs as extra breaks were introduced to allow frequent cleaning of all facilities”.

The launch of a second automated dispensing facility in Leicester also increased Pharmacy2U’s operating capacity while keeping operating costs low, according to the report.

C+D reported last year that Pharmacy2U had incurred a £16m loss for the financial year from April 2018 to March 2019 but that it expected “profitability to increase”.


“Unprecedented growth”


According to the financial report, the business despatched almost 12.7 million NHS prescription items as of March 31, 2021, 71% up on the 2020 total.

Pharmacy2U continued to invest in “multiple marketing channels” in the 12 months leading to March 31, managing to increase the number of patients nominations by 19% to 525,000.

“The coronavirus pandemic and subsequent national lockdowns that began in March 2020 led to unprecedented growth in demand for the company’s services,” according to the financial documents.

The online pharmacy also grew its “core business”, the documents said, as it also contributed to the national COVID-19 vaccination efforts, administering more than 700,000 vaccines from over 25 locations as of March 31.


Positive future outlook


The pharmacy is “well positioned” to continue to grow its NHS repeat prescription business, according to the report. It is “striving to gain a much higher share of the NHS repeat prescription market by continuing to improve the existing multi-channel marketing approach”, it said.

Pharmacy2U is also set to contribute to the COVID-19 booster programme and the flu vaccination programme, and keen to offer other pharmacy services “given the increased profile and community presence generated by the vaccine sites”. 

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