Aswas Lifecare to increase store count from 270 to over 500 by 2022

Peethaambaran Kunnathoor, ChennaiMonday, July 19, 2021, 09:00 Hrs  [IST]

The retail pharmacy chain enterprise in Kerala, Aswas Lifecare, which sells generic and branded medicines on 15% discount to the people, is gearing up to increase the number of franchisee-based community pharmacy stores to over 300 in another two months.

At present the company has 270 franchisee-based retail pharmacy shops in 13 districts and efforts are going on to open counters in the remaining district of Wynadu.

Aswas community pharmacies are the first retail chain pharmacy system in Kerala established to provide quality branded medicines at lower prices through services of registered pharmacists. The director board of the company includes nine registered pharmacists from various districts. Generic and branded products are sold through its two arms, Aswas Meditech and Aswas Pharma.

“We plan to expand to more than 500 pharmacy counters throughout Kerala by 2022, but in Thiruvananthapuram no further franchise will be given as we have 95 counters in the district. But we are eying northern districts to expand our business”, said YS Biju, chairman and managing director of the Aswas Lifecare.
He said the company is also expanding its presence in the rural areas of southern Tamil Nadu through the franchisee-based model. Currently, 10 counters are operating in Kanyakumari district. The expansion is only through the franchise route.

While talking to Pharmabiz about the expansion plan of the company's franchise network, Biju said the company has a plan to support the domestic drug manufacturers in the state by purchasing maximum quantity of prescription products from the pharma firms in Kerala. If the industry is willing to hold a discussion with Aswas, they are ready for a business talk and a tie-up with them. He added that even now a large quantity of products is purchased from Kerala based companies.

When contacted, Kerala Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association (KPMA) president N Purushothaman Namputhiri said the association will entertain any such proposal from Aswas.