The high cost of local medicine prompted Erikagen Inc. to get into the business of offering an affordable alternative to consumers. Teodoro Ferrer, president of Erikagen Inc., observed that Filipinos had a misguided notion that branded medicines was the end all and be all when it came to their health care.
“We had this shared observation that many Filipinos buy expensive branded medicines that they could ill afford due to widespread misinformation or ignorance about generic medicines, which also had the problem of not being easily accessible,” he said.
It was in September of 2003 that Ferrer and his wife Rosalinda joined forces with the family of Alexandra and Julien Bello to sell generic medicines to Class C, D, and E communities around the country. They called the company Erikagen and its drugstores Generika, with the goal of “properly educating people about generics and making available to them quality affordable alternatives to branded drugs.”
In May 2008, after putting up a total of 16 company-owned stores, Erikagen opened its first franchised store at Mega Q Mart in Quezon City. Ferrer recalls after carefully studying the market: “After a gradual, deliberate start, we quickened the pace of our expansion as we gained more confidence. We were gladdened by the positive results in our franchise stores and the favorable feedback from the marketplace, ” he said.
A GOOD INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITY
The total investment for a Generika franchise starts at P900,000 depending on the store size. This is inclusive of provisions for store renovation, staff hiring and training, initial stock inventory, computers and printers, computerized POS (point-of-sale system), security deposit, advance rental payment, and working capital.
The company provides ongoing support to its franchisees such as a market study of the franchised store’s location; staff hiring assistance; extended training program at in-house and existing stores; detailed store manuals; and technical, sales, leadership, and supervisory courses.
The payback period for the investment in the Generika franchise varies depending on store location and the level of involvement of the investor in the business. “For an absentee franchisee, recovey of the initial investment may take a year-and-a-half to three years or even longer,” Ferrer says.
Are you interested in a Generika franchise? For more information, click here.
Photo courtesy of Generika Drugstore.