the Polish market
of supplies to hospitals
deliveries a month
stat orders - within 6 hours
PGF Urtica is a wholesale business with national coverage and an established position of market leader. It supplies products to more than 750 hospitals and over 1,000 other customers across the country, mainly non-public healthcare centres as well as Sanitary and Epidemiological Stations.
The company has 25 years of experience, unquestioned expertise and a sound record of legal compliance. PGF Urtica is driven by the highest ethical standards, operating in accordance with its Code of Ethics.
Its operations are run at the central warehouse in Łódź and five branch offices located in Wrocław, Łódź, Katowice, Poznań, and Lublin. Every day, more than 5,500 product items are shipped to hospitals from the central warehouse in Łódź.
The company owes its leading position in wholesale to hospitals to consistent strategy implementation and focus on core business areas. The long experience, broad range of attractively priced products (approximately 9 thousand SKUs), and large scale of operations are factors that have helped the company consolidate its market position. PGF Urtica’s other strengths include efficient logistics and a range of financial services offered to hospitals.
Having regard to its customers’ needs, PGF Urtica developed an Emergency Response System, under which sales personnel are now on call on a 24/7 basis, and drivers are ready to deliver STAT orders.
The company builds solid business relations and supports its trading partners through training and publishing projects. With the support of scientific institutions and hospital pharmacy experts, PGF Urtica publishes Farmakoekonomika szpitalna, a quarterly magazine distributed to 500 hospitals and pharmacies across Poland.
In 2015, revenue went up by approximately 7.5% year on year. The company was focused on optimising its key business processes and improving tendering and sales procedures, in order to improve the service quality.
The financial products department, whose role is to manage financing programmes for in-patient healthcare institutions, continued its key initiatives from previous years. It focused primarily on fostering good relations with those institutions to improve its financial and debt collection efficiency. As a result, more than 60 hospitals used the company’s financial services in 2015.
For many years, PGF Urtica has been fostering good relations with manufacturers, which has made it a trusted partner in the industry and allowed it to develop a wide range of integrated services dedicated to manufacturers, including professional management of tender processes, market research, sales support, logistics and marketing services.
In December 2015, the company received an ISO 9001:2008 certificate, confirming implementation and effective maintenance of a quality management system. The result is an increased competitive advantage in tendering procedures. At the same time, PGF Urtica was working to improve customer service, one of the objectives being to reduce the number of customer complaints due to errors in the order acceptance process.
In 2015, as a part of the ‘Urtica for Children’ project, PGF Urtica organised the 18th charity auction of art works, raising a record-high amount of PLN 385,000. The whole proceeds were transferred to 17 children’s oncology and haematology wards of hospitals participating in the ‘Sunny Gallery’ project. In 2015, some of funds were used to organise rehabilitation camps for children of those wards. The project is an opportunity to bring together various business circles and show business people that they can actively help children treated at oncology and haematology wards, which is a considerable aid to local communities. The Dbam o Zdrowie Foundation is our partner in this event.
CHALLENGES AND GOALS
The market of supplies to hospitals is always changing. In recent years, the DTH model, i.e. direct distribution from the manufacturer to hospital pharmacies, has been gaining importance. On the one hand, this increases competitive pressures, but on the other - gives new opportunities to experienced players who are able to evolve from the role of a traditional distributor.
In order to strengthen its relations with manufacturers, on January 1st 2016 PFG Urtica acquired 100% of shares in Pharmalink, a company providing transport services to pharmaceutical manufacturers. As a result, the two companies created a new business line − supplies to hospitals and logistics services.
In 2015, PFG Urtica researched the evolving market and devised a strategy to analyse the commercial market, with the aim of expanding the list of products offered to existing customers and starting sales to new partners. 2016 will see the opening of a new central warehouse in Łódź and deployment of new software designed to support the conduct and management of tender procedures. The company’s long-term goal is to increase its market shares while maintaining profitability of sales and a safe level of receivables.
Pharmalink is the leader in the transport of drugs, medical products and wound dressings directly from pharmaceutical manufacturers to customers – including in-patient and out-patient healthcare institutions, wholesalers, pharmacies, and out-patient clinics.
The company’s logistics system is fully compliant with the requirements of the Pharmaceutical Law of September 6th 2001 and the Regulation of the Minister of Health on Good Distribution Practice of July 26th 2002. The company was the first logistics operator in Poland to use dry ice and cold chain transport (in the temperature range from 2°C to 8°C), based on special-purpose vehicles fitted with isothermal containers and temperature-control equipment.
Pharmalink is able to reach customers in any location in Poland within 24 hours, and also offers express life-saving and fast-track deliveries (within 12 hours). The adverse environmental impact of its operations is reduced by optimisation of transport routes and maximum utilisation of the vehicles’ capacities.
Pharmalink was also the first operator in Poland to use the GPS system in all its vehicles to ensure real-time vehicle tracking and on-line control of temperature conditions during transport.
In 2015, the company continued its efforts to optimise the cost of transport, opened new handling and temporary storage facilities in Gdańsk, Wrocław, Poznań and Białystok, acquired new direct distribution contracts, and introduced solutions to improve service quality, reporting a growth of over 10% in revenue from sales to external customers.