Farmacias GI was created to address the need for medicines and medical attention from a large segment of the population, especially people with low income. After a comprehensive analysis of the sector, this pharmaceutical chain identified the main medical needs and set out to address them. Now the company has more than 1,000 points of sale in the entire country and aims to be the largest provider of pharmaceutical products in Mexico.
Exclusive interview with Roberto León Muñoz, Director General of Farmacias GI
Q: How has Farmacias GI evolved since its beginnings?
A: Farmacias GI was born in a new era of medicine. Since our origins in 1999, we identified that the fundamental element of our brand was to bring the benefits of medicine to those who needed them the most by providing attentive service. Our goal was to look after the Mexican health and economy. The Farmacias GI model includes a physicians’ office next to the pharmacy in order to provide medical attention to outpatients. These consulting rooms have allowed us to offer professional and trustworthy medical services to patients. All our doctors are qualified professionals, capable of creating and reviewing a patient’s complete medical history in order to guarantee accurate and effective treatment with products they can obtain at our pharmacies. This service is provided in a clean and comfortable environment where a patient and their family can feel treated with respect and wisdom. We currently provide more than 9 million consultations.
Q: In what way have consumer perceptions changed in relation to generic medication and how has the company adapted to the various changes undergone by the pharmacy segment?
A: We created Farmacias GI at the height of the interchangeable generics market boom. Initially the public was distrustful of generics since they were cheaper and thus perceived to be of poor quality, however gradually trust increased. Today, eight out of ten medications sold in Mexico are generics. A few years after we started, we realized that Farmacias GI needed to professionalize itself, and we enlisted the help of a consultancy to transition from being dealers to franchisors. In 2009, we joined the Mexican Association of Franchises, which allowed us to participate in international expositions and better position ourselves in the market. The latest change we have undergone is the complete reengineering of our brand. A complete analysis of the market highlighted that it is very saturated and consumers are demanding more added value. Today it is not enough to sell medication, but integral products and services have to be offered. Our current targets are the low to medium socioeconomic levels. Getting to know our clients means constantly performing market research to understand and satisfy their needs.
This post is an excerpt of Mexico Health Review 2015, to be released in September 2015. To pre-order your copy click here. Please direct all media enquiries to [email protected].