Segment GermanyMarket environmentBusiness performance

In 2021 the Zur Rose Group saw a significant increase in external revenue 1 in the Germany segment by 19.4 per cent to EUR 1,232,2 million. The increase is mainly due to the online business in non-­prescription drugs and healthcare products, which more than made up for the slight decline in revenue from prescription drugs on a paper prescription. In Germany, the DocMorris healthcare platform completed the next step in its development. By the start of January 2022, the DocMorris app had already reached one million downloads. More than 200 local pharmacies are already cooperating with DocMorris on the marketplace ­integrated into the platform. Strategic partnerships expand the offering for ­patients.

1 External revenue consists of the consolidated revenue of the Zur Rose Group plus online revenues of pharmacies supplied by the Zur Rose Group less the consolidated revenue from supplying them.

Strategic partnerships for innovative treatment paths

The Zur Rose Group is continuing to expand the European healthcare ecosystem under the DocMorris umbrella brand. In 2021, Zur Rose entered into two strategic partnerships with global healthcare companies to offer customer-centred health journeys for people living with chronic diseases such as obesity and diabetes, with the initial focus on Germany:

January 2021 saw Zur Rose and Novo Nordisk pool their skills in the field of obesity. Since March 2021, DocMorris Obesity Care has been helping people with obesity find the way to get the best treatment. Via the digital hub people who are affected can find out about healthcare solutions, get in touch with specialist doctors and gain access to digital solutions for obesity care.

The partnership with Roche, which has been in place since October 2021, brings together both companies’ healthcare products with solutions and high-quality services from third parties to make life easier for people living with diabetes. Over the course of 2022 they will gain easy, centralised and digital access to information about the disease, optimum supply and a range of medication and treatment options.

Multi-media campaign across Germany

February 2021 saw the launch of “The New Healthy”, a multimedia campaign across Germany for the DocMorris brand. This will convey the new brand values of DocMorris following its extensive rebranding at the end of 2020. DocMorris won eight highly prestigious international prizes, including the Red Dot for brand design and four New York Festival awards, for the new branding and the #TakeCare Christmas campaign. These came in recognition of the new brand image, which reflects the values and positioning of DocMorris. The campaign showcased the brand as an approachable and reliable partner and makes the digital services on the healthcare platform come alive. By the end of the year, supported brand recognition had risen significantly to about 70 per cent.

Merger of apo-rot and DocMorris

apo-rot B.V. merged with DocMorris N.V. as of 30 June 2021. All employees were taken over and integrated into the existing structures at the Heerlen site. The Zur Rose Group has therefore successfully completed the next step of the integration towards achieving efficiency improvements.

Technical components supplied for e-prescriptions

On 30 June 2021 all technical components – the gematik app for forwarding e-prescriptions, the identity provider as the central access system and the specialist e-prescription service on which all e-prescriptions are stored in encrypted form (and which the Zur Rose subsidiary eHealth-Tec was involved as a partner to IBM) – were supplied on schedule. A test phase could therefore start for e-prescriptions on 1 July 2021 using Berlin-Brandenburg as a focus region. DocMorris was also part of it. The aim was for selected doctors in their practices or by telemedicine, local and online pharmacies and patients to try out the new prescription and dispensing process with e-prescriptions. The controlled test and pilot operations were extended beyond 1 January 2022.

eHealth-Tec devised a compatible software development kit (SDK) to ensure software from providers of practice and pharmacy management systems and hospital information systems were connected to the gematik specialist e-prescription service on time. The tool met the highest security standards and all gematik requirements and combined many individual steps into a single rigorous process.

Next step in developing the DocMorris healthcare platform in Germany

By the end of 2021 all services and functions, such as e-commerce, healthcare services and marketplace, had been brought together in a digital DocMorris healthcare platform with a new app. The platform will therefore be even more closely focused on the needs of its customers. By the start of January 2022 the DocMorris app had already reached one million downloads, making it one of the fastest growing healthcare apps in the German market. The platform will therefore be even more closely focused on the needs of its customers. With its centralised portfolio of services and easy access using a mobile app, the DocMorris healthcare platform is creating a holistic way for people to manage their health in one click – from diagnosis in an online consultation with a doctor and dispensing an e-prescription all the way through to pharmaceutical advice, an interaction check and the various options for delivery.

As a result of the integration of the DocMorris Express marketplace, which comprises a network of just over 200 partner pharmacies and their services, customers on the DocMorris healthcare platform have the option of same-day express delivery by local partner pharmacies when ordering their medications and healthcare products, as well as having them posted. Same-day delivery is already possible in many of the major cities in Germany.

Right from the start of the gematik e-prescription test phase on 1 July 2021 the app had a smart scan function for having e-prescriptions dispensed. When the launch of e-prescriptions becomes mandatory across the country, customers will expect functions tailored to their needs. Dispensing e-prescriptions has to be user-friendly and barrier-free and there must be direct access to local doctors, as well as online by TeleClinic, with the ability to choose the method of transfer. Scanning an e-prescription in particular gives patients a secure and rapid way to send the digital prescription information to the pharmacy of their choice. OTC medicines and healthcare products can be ordered directly in the DocMorris app at the same time.