New York City-based, day of delivery pharmacy Capsule scores $50M

By Laura Lovett
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Online pharmacy and delivery service Capsule has landed a whopping $50 million in Series B funding led by Thrive Capital and Brook Capital Partners. The company, which defines itself by its same-day delivery policy, is now looking to expand its New York-based business to a national market. 

“People want their medicine the day it’s prescribed. Capsule’s same-day delivery offers that commodity, but also much more: Our emotionally resonant customer experience builds trust and loyalty. Our proprietary technology supports the first pharmacy system that works for all of the stakeholders in healthcare — enabling customized outcomes for doctors, hospitals, insurers, and manufacturers,"  Eric Kinariwala, founder and CEO, wrote in an email to Babyforyou.net.ua.  "And our holistic pharmacy model meets the demands of the modern consumer. Traditionally, online retail companies have used their technology to eliminate human interaction, but at Capsule, we’ve built our platform to amplify the power of human interaction in your healthcare.”

According to its website, once a doctor prescribes the medication, the patient will get a text from Capsule enabling them to schedule delivery. The company promises to deliver the medication to anyone in New York City within two hours of the interaction. The platform also lets patients transfer their refills from their old pharmacies to Capsule. Doctors can also e-prescribe to Capsule right away. 

“While working as an investor in healthcare, technology, and retail companies, I had a personal pharmacy experience that opened my eyes to everything that was broken within the system,” Kinariwala wrote to Babyforyou.net.ua. “We founded Capsule in 2015 to create a modern pharmacy that works for everyone. That’s not just consumers, who face the familiar frustrations of conventional retail pharmacies, but also doctors, hospitals, insurance companies, and drug manufacturers. What we’ve built is a platform and user experience to change the game in terms of supporting and connecting stakeholders and driving better outcomes faster. The conventional pharmacy experience is broken for everyone, and Capsule is the strongest independent player in the space.”

The business, which right now caters only to New York City only, has caught the attention of investors in recent years. In fact, in May of 2017 the company scored another $20 million in funding led by Thrive Capital, which also participated in this most recent funding round. 

“The pharmacy is the hub of healthcare—the highest frequency interaction. The pharmacy is the natural place to connect healthcare stakeholders and improve outcomes and conventional pharmacies are missing that opportunity,” Kinarwala wrote.  “Our unconventional model calls for an unconventional growth plan. We will continue to grow our business in partnership with all of the stakeholders in healthcare. Rather than open one market at a time, we are taking the time to lay the foundation—the people, the process, and the technology — to enable us to grow in a different way.”

Online pharmacies have been in the healthcare news headlines this year. In June, Amazon made waves when it announced that it would be acquiring virtual pharmacy PillPack for just under $1 billion. The New England-based startup delivers medications in pre-sorted dose packages. It also coordinates refills and renewals and ensures that shipments are sent on time.  

Although more niche, men’s health products and medication company Hims has recently landed $50 million in funding. The startup allows men to get prescriptions for hair loss and erectile dysfunction products through its online platform.