Santosh Sahu and Gary Jones

Charac, a leading healthcare SaaS provider, today announces the acquisition of Pro Delivery Manager (PDM), a leading prescription delivery management system, from its shareholders, which include the National Pharmacy Association (NPA).

The acquisition will empower pharmacies affiliated with Charac to manage medication inventory and deliveries efficiently, streamlining the process for patients to track, access, and receive prescriptions promptly. With medicine shortages in the UK doubling over the past two years and over 300 pharmacies closing in the last fiscal year, access to medication is more challenging. Improved prescription delivery will help to address this issue by expanding the reach of pharmacies and improving convenience for patients accessing medication.

PDM is a prescription delivery management system responsible for monitoring, tracking and delivering 1.5 million prescriptions per month from community pharmacies to patients across the UK. With this acquisition, Charac, in only its fourth year of operation, becomes the largest patient relationship management SaaS platform in the UK, with 20% of community pharmacies nationwide now using at least one module of Charac's platform.

The newly introduced Pharmacy First service grants community pharmacists in England additional responsibilities. However, an NPA survey reveals that 70% of pharmacists currently experience increased pressure as a result of Pharmacy First. Furthermore, the community pharmacy sector continues to face significant challenges, with an annual funding shortfall exceeding £750m.

The UK now handles over 1.04 billion prescriptions annually, with over a billion prescriptions dispensed by primary care each year since 2016. The global prescription delivery market is currently valued at around USD$111 billion (£88bn) and is projected to reach USD$199.65 billion (£158.45bn) by 2026 with a CAGR of 21.6%, highlighting the impact of e-commerce on its growth.

Charac is on a mission to help community pharmacies across the UK to streamline operations, relieve time pressure, increase efficiency, and improve patient outcomes. It allows pharmacists to manage repeat prescriptions, access patient records, create bookings and conduct consultations. The acquisition of PDM will help connect the journey from order to delivery using pharmacies' own delivery drivers, ensuring a streamlined delivery process.

Through the acquisition, Charac, has over 20% of pharmacies and access to 7.5 million patients utilising its platform in the UK and thanks to its partnership with ASX-listed MedAdvisor, more than 40,000 pharmacies and 235 million patients globally. With over £4m of funding raised since its commercialisation in October 2022, Charac has been backed by key industry players, including the NPA, and British institutions such as the Royal Mail.

Santosh Sahu, founder and CEO of Charac, said: "As a diabetic, I founded Charac as a result of my own difficulties tracking and receiving life-saving prescriptions. My vision for Charac was to ensure that millions of people across the country would not face the same anxiety in accessing prescriptions, and I am delighted to say that we are now one step closer to achieving that.

"The acquisition of PDM from its shareholders, which included the NPA, makes Charac the biggest patient relationship management platform in the UK. This will enable us to work with one in five community pharmacies and deliver vital prescriptions to over 7.5 million patients across the country, ensuring greater access to medication for all."

Gary Jones, founder and Managing Director of Pro Delivery Manager, said: "As a result of our deal with Charac, we can harness the company board's collective 90 years of experience in market-leading tech and logistics to further improve our delivery systems for the benefit of UK pharmacies and their patients.

"This move reflects our determination to enhance our services in the UK market, lessen the carbon footprint of prescription deliveries, and builds upon our origins as a prescription delivery management system built by pharmacists for pharmacies. We are delighted to be playing a part in redefining the role of our community pharmacies to make them even more efficient and effective providers of primary care, and significantly widen access to life-saving medicines."

Simon Tebbutt, Director of Membership at the National Pharmacy Association, said: "This deal will enhance the patient experience  of millions of people across the UK. Prescription delivery services are vital ways of ensuring that some of society's most vulnerable have convenient access to life-saving medications, and new investment will ensure these services remain robust and fit for function.

"Through enhanced digitalisation and greater investment, deals such as this will further improve people's access to all the services that community pharmacies can now provide."