Santo Leo featured in Costar article as Subject Matter Expert in Online Pharmacy and the Amazon-PillPack Acquisition

Source: http://product.costar.com/home/news/shared/193961?tag=1&es_p=7289344

Amazon’s PillPack Deal Could Drive Industrial Property Demand

Retailer May Need Specialized Warehouses to Support Online Pharmacy

Amazon’s pending purchase of online pharmacy PillPack has the potential to create a need for specialized warehouse space to ship prescription drugs and even lead to small retail clinics, adding demand to an already surging industrial property market.

The move by the online retailer could have significant implications for industrial property sales, which outperformed other major commercial sectors across the U.S. in the second quarter as Amazon and other companies pump up their supply chains for e-commerce delivery, according to CoStar data.

“If you really read between the lines here, and kind of analyze this, Amazon wants to be part of every single transaction that happens in our lives,” said Gregory Healy, senior vice president of chain and logistics at Colliers International.

Amazon, the world’s largest retailer, bought PillPack in late June for an estimated $1 billion. PillPack holds pharmacy licenses in all 50 states and ships medications from its primary drug distribution center in Manchester, NH, to customers who take multiple daily prescriptions. The company is targeting a major market: On its website, PillPack says 40 million adults take more than five prescriptions each day.

If Amazon incorporates PillPack’s approximately 1 million customers into its Prime membership business, which has 100 million subscribers, the company would need drug distribution centers near large cities cleared to handle medicines, said Santo Leo, founder and CEO of MailMyPrescriptions.com in Boca Raton, FL.

Those could be small centers dotted across the country or a handful of larger ones. In either case, they will have to meet far more specialized state and federal requirements because the goods being handled are medicine, Leo said.

Though Amazon already owns or leases about 100 million square feet of distribution space, “you can’t just rip a warehouse out and put a pharmacy there,” said Leo, whose mail-order pharmacy is licensed to dispense prescription drugs in more than 40 states. “You need to design these from scratch. You need more power, more data, more security measures. Traditional big, bulky, automated facilities are just not designed for pharmaceuticals.”

Pharmaceutical warehouses must have processes in place for temperature control, security, documentation and the ability to address product recalls, said Carmine Catizone, executive director of the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy, which accredits wholesale pharmaceutical warehouses. Each state also has different licensing requirements.

The company may need new buildings for an online pharmacy, the analysts said. Though Amazon is opening fulfillment centers at a dizzying rate — eight so far in 2018 — it has a host of controls to ensure each center operates at maximum capacity and has little extra space, the company said in its 2017 annual report.

Amazon declined to comment on its plans for specialized PillPack warehouse space. Amazon hasn’t made any public statements about its PillPack strategy since shortly after the purchase, which is expected to close by the end of the year.

Amazon’s PillPack purchase follows its joint venture with Berkshire Hathaway Inc. and JPMorgan Chase to improve the U.S. health care system and cut costs. PillPack is part of that strategy, said Leo, who predicted Amazon would move quickly to grow PillPack to place pressure on health-care competitors.

“How do you keep people out of the doctor’s office or hospital lab? Make sure people take their prescriptions,” he said.

Healy said the purchase could have implications for any brick-and-mortar plans Amazon has as well, noting the trend toward small, walk-in clinics across the country. It’s estimated there are now almost 3,000 such clinics, according to Accenture. He also speculated that Amazon could add pharmacy services to its Whole Foods stores.

“It will probably net a greater industrial space for Amazon, but I would think there would be some sort of new retail model,” he said. “There could be something else down the pipeline, perhaps a new form of retail.”

MailMyPrescriptions.com Featured in GrowFL 2018 Companies to Watch as Boca Raton Finalist

As featured in:

Read the MailMyPrescriptions.com (Boca Raton, FL) press release:

MailMyPrescriptions.com Among Second-Stage Businesses Competing to Earn Prestigious Honor

BOCA RATON, Fla.Aug. 20, 2018 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ — MailMyPrescriptions.com was among the first round of 2018 Florida Companies to Watch finalists recently announced by GrowFL. The awards event – now in its eighth year – honors 50 select second-stage companies from throughout the state for developing valuable products and services, creating quality jobs, enriching communities, and broadening new industries throughout Florida. Chosen from a candidate pool of 134 growing second-stage businesses, the finalists collectively represented $518 million in annual revenue and employed 2,743 full-time equivalent employees in 2017.

“This recognition is a great accomplishment for our company,” says MailMyPrescriptions.com CEO and founder, Santo Leo. “This encourages us to continue our company-wide commitment of providing fair and transparent prescription drug prices, to the millions of Americans who are suffering from rising out of pocket prescription drug costs.”

The Florida Companies To Watch program consists of two rounds of selections. Finalists now advance to the second round, where they will be further evaluated based on their performance in the marketplace, innovative products, services or processes, philanthropy and empowered employees.

“We applaud these first round finalists who have shown how they stand out in their regions as innovative business leaders, going to the next level to grow their companies. They are true rock stars,” says Dr. Tom O’Neal, GrowFL Executive Director.

The Finalists represent a unique group of scalable, high-growth enterprises that are already located within Florida. These high growth enterprises are an important segment of our economy and their numbers have been steadily increasing, which contributed to Florida’s ranking of 24 on the 2018 Kauffman Index of Growth Entrepreneurship. Florida Companies to Watch recognizes the different approach needed to successfully grow and scale a business and celebrates those that are working to achieve this goal.

Developed by the Edward Lowe Foundation, Florida Companies To Watch is a distinguished awards program specifically designed to seek out second-stage businesses from a wide range of industries representing all areas of the state, not just those in major metropolitan areas. In addition to evaluating past growth and projected success, applicant companies are judged according to their special strengths and impact in their markets, communities and within the state – thus deeming them “worth watching.”

The winners will be announced in MID-September. The 2018 honorees will be celebrated at the awards ceremony February 9th at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts in Tampa, FL.

For more information visit https://www.growfl.com/flctw18/.

About MailMyPrescriptions.com
MailMyPrescriptions.com® is America’s first wholesale pharmacy, serving thousands of customers nationally since dispensing its first “wholesale-priced” prescription in 2017. The company guarantees low cash-pay prices on over 1,400 FDA-Approved generic drugs from its licensed US mail-order pharmacy. In addition, MailMyPrescriptions.com® offers a cash-pay generic price match guarantee. Average customers save over $1,000 annually by switching to MailMyPrescriptions.com® versus paying retail list prices. From obtaining customers’ prescriptions from their physician or current pharmacy to providing clinical care over the phone to shipping directly to customers’ doors, MailMyPrescriptions.com® does all the work. For more information, visit http://www.MailMyPrescriptions.com.

About GrowFL
GrowFL was created in 2009 as an economic development program focused on assisting second-stage growth companies prosper in the state of Florida. By providing strategies, resources and support to second-stage companies for next level growth through Strategic Research, Peer Learning and Leadership Development, GrowFL helps companies overcome obstacles to growth and leads them towards prosperity. Based on the philosophy of Economic Gardening® – to grow existing businesses in a community, region or state – GrowFL, the Florida Economic Gardening Institute, is a critical component to the state’s economic development strategy and Florida’sentrepreneurial ecosystem. GrowFL is a statewide economic development organization certified by the National Center for Economic Gardening through the Edward Lowe Foundation. Learn more at http://www.GrowFL.com.

MailMyPrescriptions.com CEO Santo J. Leo Featured on Trustpilot.com Blog

I am excited to announce that I was recently featured on the Trustpilot blog, in an article titled: Trustpilot Everywhere – how our customers succeed by promoting their reputation across all channels.

The article focused on the integration of Trustpilot reviews in marketing campaigns to instill trust in potential customers. It highlighted some of the most successful advertising campaigns across the world, including MailMyPrescriptions.com for incorporating Trustpilot reviews in its national television commercials.

One of the key points I shared in the article was the use of storytelling in validating our customer’s experience:

“By utilizing Trustpilot reviews, we have an opportunity to let our customers tell others their story to not just friends and family, but the country. These stories validate the customer experience… MailMyPrescriptions.com has reinvented the pharmacy experience, and we are using Trustpilot to reinvent storytelling.”

Aside from outlining the most effective campaigns the article also reiterates the impact of online reviews on customers purchasing decisions.

Trustpilot reviews have become an essential part of our business as they help us strengthen the conversation with current, new and potential customers.

Customer feedback is becoming a necessity for any business looking to grow and increase customer confidence at different touch points of the buying journey. We believe that brands must always put people at the heart of their marketing strategy to create authentic campaigns and Trustpilot has been an excellent tool for this.

At MailMyPrescriptions.com we are committed to providing our customers excellent service and thoughtful care and what better way to do this than by building healthy relationships with them.

To read the full article, visit:

http://blog.trustpilot.com/blog/trustpilot-everywhere-how-our-customers-succeed-by-promoting-their-reputation-across-all-channels

MailMyPrescriptions.com featured on NBC’s WPTV 5

Original Link: https://www.wptv.com/news/region-s-palm-beach-county/boca-raton/boca-raton-startup-makes-getting-prescription-cheaper-and-easier

BOCA RATON, Fla. – A Boca Raton start-up is turning the conventional pharmacy upside down. The founder of MailMyPrescriptions.com said it can save you thousands of dollars on medication.

Joel Neiberg is a busy man. The general contractor takes about ten pills a day to keep him going. Even with health insurance, he was paying hundreds of dollars out of his own pocket every month for those prescriptions.

“It was almost $500 or $600 a month,” he said. “My prices came down to about $60 or $70 per month.”

Enter MailMyPrescriptions.com. Santo Leo launched the company in Boca Raton last year. It’s basically a wholesale pharmacy that mails your medication to your home.

“A pretty simple structure for a complicated process overall,” Leo said.

A $5 monthly membership allows you to buy medication prescribed by your doctor for the same price the pharmacy pays.

Leo said the drugs come from the same distributors that supply CVS or Publix, but without the markup.

“On average our savings are 93 percent,” Leo boasted.

We compared costs for generic Crestor, Prilosec and Zocor. Across the board, MailMyPrescriptions.com was cheapest.

“It’s transparent, it’s wholesale, there are no discounts, what you see is what you get,” Leo said.

The pharmacy doesn’t accept insurance. Licensed pharmacists call your doctor to verify each prescription.

Neiberg thought it sounded too good to be true. Now, he swears by it which is good news because he’ll have prescriptions to fill for years to come.

“I’ll be on these, per my doctor, pretty much for the rest of my life,” the contractor admitted.

For more information on the concept, visit the pharmacy’s website by clicking here.

Santo Leo featured in LifeZette article

The Worst Possible Choice: Food or Medicine

The skyrocketing premiums a majority of Americans face for their health insurance in 2017, along with a diminishing choice of care, are dominating headlines — and rightly so. Yet access to the prescription drugs we need and the prices we pay for them are perhaps of most concern.

“Almost every pharmacist in the country has seen customers who have to choose between medication and food,” said Santo J. Leo, CEO of MailMyPrescriptions.com in Boca Raton, Florida. “Pharmacies aren’t allowed, legally, to help these people pay for their medications because it’s considered a kickback. We need some real reforms to the system ASAP.”

The latest Kaiser Family Foundation poll shows Americans believe the high cost of prescription drugs needs to be a top health-care priority for the next president and Congress. The survey found that “making sure high-cost drugs for chronic conditions, such as HIV, hepatitis, mental illness and cancer are affordable to those who need them” is viewed as a “top priority” by 74 percent of the public — across party lines.

Pharmaceutical company Mylan NV continues to come under intense scrutiny for increasing the price of its EpiPen by more than 500 percent, to a price of $494 to $795 for a two-pack (according to prices from GoodRX). While most Americans are familiar with that case, Mylan is not alone in aggressively jacking up prices of life-saving drugs.

Gilead Sciences rolled out a drug called Epclusa this past June to treat all viral forms of hepatitis — at a price of $74,760 for a 12-week treatment. The company had previously produced drugs that target other strains of hepatitis: Sovaldi, priced at $84,000, and Harvoni, which cost $94,500.

ARIAD raised the price of its drug Iclusig to treat chronic myeloid leukemia by 8 percent each quarter, until it reached a 39-percent increase, taking the price tag from $120,000 to $200,000 a year. Lawmakers this month formally asked for an explanation.

In September 2015, Turing Pharmaceuticals increased the price of the HIV/cancer drug, Daraprim, by over 5000 percent after acquiring rights to the drug a month earlier.

Drug companies are quick to point out the amount of time and money spent on research — but profits don’t lie. The global pharmaceutical industry earns $330 billion per year; that number is expected to rise to $440 billion in three years, according to the World Health Organization. Between 1998 and 2014, the pharmaceutical industry spent $3 billion alone on lobbying efforts.

Drug Lobby Bracing for Battle
  • The pharmaceutical lobby hiked dues for member companies by 50 percent this summer to generate an additional $100 million per year as the industry gears up for a post-election battle over drug prices. The funds will increase the trade group’s coffers to more than $300 million per year.

Gilead Sciences earned a $27.6 billion profit, while Mylan posted a $9 billion profit in 2015. Iclusig generated sales of $65.3 million in the second quarter.

Even when a drug doesn’t prove effective, its manufacturers often use it for another disease or condition — Viagra is just one example. Designed to be used as a high blood pressure and heart disease drug, it failed to be effective for that. Instead, it was repackaged as an erectile dysfunction medication to capitalize on one of its side effects — increased erections in males. Viagra is still highly profitable after 15 years on the market, earning over $1 billion per year for Pfizer.

Two primary factors responsible for the high cost of prescription drugs are market exclusivity and insurance environment, said Dr. Spencer Malkin, CEO of Prescriber’s Choice in Miami, Florida. Market exclusivity occurs when generic and branded manufacturers consolidate or merge, creating a virtual monopoly for drug makers. Using generic forms of a drug once gave the consumer a financial break — but monopolies often prevent savings.

The insurance environment is more complicated. Insurance networks delegate prescription coverage to Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs). PBMs are unregulated and often base prices upon great need or uniqueness of the drug. They also receive rebates from manufacturers and base prices to boost profit potential.

“This creates an unstable environment that deters drug price reductions and encourages higher priced drugs,” Malkin told LifeZette.

It’s where consumers are often taken advantage of, said Leo. “A complete lack of transparency in pricing structure basically creates monopolies. PBMs, which are mostly owned by pharmacies or insurance companies, negotiate pricing in secret and retail pharmacies are contractually obligated to accept that pricing if they accept insurance. This leads to huge markups.”

Leo’s company, MailMyPrescriptions.com, allows consumers to see the wholesale cost of thousands of medications and determine the markup on the drugs they use.  “We need to find a way to cut the wasteful markups and price gouging on everyday maintenance medications. These are often marked up hundreds of percentage points only to line the pockets of PBMs and retail pharmacies.”

With prescription drug use growing in the U.S., a hefty market can be manipulated for gain. A 2013 study by the Mayo Clinic showed 70 percent of Americans take at least one prescription drug, more than half take more than one drug a day — and 20 percent take five or more drugs per day.

Pat Barone, MCC, is a professional credentialed coach and author of the Own Every Bite! bodycentric re-education program for mindful and intuitive eating, who helps clients heal food addictions.

Last Modified: October 31, 2016, 8:57 am