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Celesio hails success of European virtual network

Business Lloydspharmacy parent company opened 80 pharmacies as part of pilot phase of project, but reported 2.2 per cent fall in year-on-year sales

Lloydspharmacy parent company Celesio is celebrating the successful rollout of its virtual pharmacy network across Europe, despite a 2.2 per cent fall in year-on-year sales from its pharmacy business.


There had been "substantial progress" in the pilot phase of the European pharmacy network, Celesio's chief financial officer Marion Helmes said last week (November 13), with 80 pharmacies now open. This was only 15 pharmacies short of its end-of-year target, she added.


Lloydspharmacy had shown a "positive operating performance" in the first nine months of 2013, Celesio said in its first financial update since it announced that the company would be bought by US healthcare giant McKesson.


Celesio's virtual pharmacy network involves partnering with independent pharmacies to give them access to Lloydspharmacy's "best and most innovative" initiatives

More news about Celesio

Celesio launches independent network to rival Boots' Alphega

US giant McKesson snaps up Lloydspharmacy parent company for £5bn

Celesio confident despite drop in pharmacy earnings

The UK was the most important pharmacy market for Celesio, the company said, and the integration of its wholesale and pharmacy businesses was "proving effective".


But overall revenue suffered a 4.2 per cent drop compared with the same period last year, which Celesio blamed on the "heavy earnings burden" of discounts in the German wholesale market. This followed the announcement in May of a 10.4 per cent year-on-year drop in operating earnings for the quarter.


In the UK, wholesaler AAH Pharmaceuticals had posted "encouraging growth in earnings" because of "considerable" cost-cutting and a "favourable product mix", Celesio said. However sales from its wholesale business overall dropped 4.6 per cent compared with the same period last year.


Celesio first announced its plans for a virtual pharmacy network last year. This involves partnering with independent pharmacies to give them access to Lloydspharmacy's "best and most innovative" initiatives


Following McKesson's deal to buy Celesio in October, the US company's chairman and chief executive John Hammergren voiced support for Celesio's strategy to grow services beyond dispensing in its Lloydspharmacy branches.



How is McKesson's purchase of Celesio affecting its UK pharmacies?

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John Randell, Non Pharmacist Branch Manager

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