Startup Pharmacies

Why an Advisory Team with Pharmacy Know-how is Critical in Every Stage of Ownership

A start-up pharmacy has different needs when it comes to which advisors work with you. Who are the pharmacy advisors you need during the start-up pharmacy phase? This video describes the advisors that a start-up pharmacy needs, including legal healthcare advisor to set up third-party contracts, an accounting expert experienced with pharmacies and, as they get into high-volume growth, a retirement planning expert.

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If you prefer to read this content, the video transcript is below.

As far as an advisory team of individuals to assist in a pharmacy operation, a lot of that depends on the where the pharmacy is in its life cycle. For example, if you’re involved in either a startup situation or newly-formed pharmacy you’re gonna need a different set of advisors then you would, obviously, if you’ve been in business for ten years or so. So, if we can just kind of quickly cover the gamete. In a startup situation we typically will want to see, because there’s financing involved, there are typically legal healthcare issues involved, banking issues involved, et cetera. We typically need to definitely have a legal healthcare advisor who has experience in dealing with the independent retail sector. And, there’s not a lot of folks that we have found in the country that do this and do this well, but we do work with a number of folks that cover the entire country that have a very sophisticated team of legal advisors in their firm, to assist in these kinds of things. Secondly, a lot of times we will see that a startup or a beginning stages pharmacist will need advises on the third party regulatory side of the equation. They may not either have the time or the expertise to get involved to dealing with third party contracts and with issues dealing with pharmacy benefit managers, PSCO’s, et cetera. In course, in most cases, they can handle this themselves and or really purchase these services from those from the outside that do this type of thing on an ongoing basis. So, that would be really a second set of folks that a beginning or early-stage pharmacist would need. And, I guess on the third side of the equation, and clearly I’m biased with this, but I think very honestly speaking an accounting expert in the pharmacy arena is somebody clearly that this startup or early-stage pharmacy needs to make sure that A, the accounting system is in place, that the checks and balances and controls are where they need to be, that all the proper balance sheet information and PNL information is being produced, on an accrual basis, on a monthly arrangement, clearly that that person needs to be very much engaged prior to starting up a pharmacy, and in the very early stages, to be able to monitor what’s taking place cash-flow wise. And obviously, in a startup process, we wanna make sure that we’re cash-flow positive as quickly as we can be. Ideally that will be inside of that two-year or 18-month timeframe, and that’s assuming that we are properly capitalized from that perspective. As you move forward in your… As you turn profitable, and as you grow in the maturity of the pharmacy with higher volume in the pharmacy, you probably will get involved other folks, including retirement planning experts, preferably those that are not trying to sale you something but to assist in making sure that with your accounting slash CPA advisors and the retirement folks, that you’re picking the right plan to make sure that you’re covered with respect to what your desires of having in place, looking at all the options to again, depending on where you are in the life cycle of that pharmacy, sometimes that involves actuary, sometimes that involves administrators of these plans. But usually, that’s gonna be in a more, little bit more advanced stage as you go down the path of ownership in the pharmacy. But that would be a core group of pharmacists’ advisors that we typically like to see involved in any pharmacy operation.

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