Through its successful partnership with client Boehringer Ingelheim entered into just over a year ago, Imperial Health Sciences has made significant inroads into the veterinary medicine sector of the pharmaceutical distribution market.
Managing Director, Lara Haigh says that when Imperial secured a national distribution contract for Boehringer Ingelheim’s pharmaceuticals, consumer healthcare commodities and animal health products, it represented the organisation’s first foray into the distribution of veterinary medicine – and there was a lot to learn.
The company, however, rose to the challenge and to ensure all activity was tracked and service levels were met, Haigh recognised the need to invest in human resources dedicated to the veterinary medicines side of Boehringer Ingelheim’s business.
“We thus aligned ourselves with regulations in the industry and dedicated personnel were trained by Boehringer Ingelheim. We upskilled our people to deal with a brand new sector and new channels of veterinary practices,” says Haigh.
She notes that Imperial also succeeded in providing Boehringer Ingelheim with a smooth transition from its previous logistics service provider.
“The idea of transitioning to a new logistics service provider can be extremely daunting because of the potential market disruption, the possible financial impact, the effect on customer service and even on the principal’s marketshare. With a project management team focused purely on Boehringer Ingelheim, we developed a project plan and offered our client guidance and support to make the move as smooth and painless as possible,” says Haigh.
With just over a year down the line since the inception of the partnership, Imperial’s relationship with Boehringer Ingelheim has gone from strength to strength with Imperial becoming an extension of Boehringer Ingelheim’s supply chain as opposed to merely a service provider.
The company has also honed its expertise in this market and is now aiming to make further inroads into this market. “We believe a gap exists in the logistics and distribution solutions available for veterinary medicine,” says Haigh.
The Boehringer Ingelheim group is one of the top 20 pharmaceutical companies in the world. Since it was founded in 1885, the family-owned company has been committed to researching, developing, manufacturing and marketing novel medications of high therapeutic value for human and veterinary medicine.