Technology Considerations when Buying and Selling Your Pharmacy

Episode 24

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On this episode of the Pharmacy View podcast, Scott and his guest, Natalie Sirianni, break down the many components involved in the sale of a pharmacy. A broker whose entire family works in various aspects of the industry, Natalie draws on 15 years of experience. She walks us through a checklist of items to consider when buying or selling a pharmacy. Many of the most challenging aspects of such sales extend well beyond traditional bricks-and-mortar business concerns.

Among the topics Scott and Natalie discuss: The advantages of keeping thorough, easily accessible cloud-based records; the importance not only of cultivating an online presence but planning ahead for the transfer of various digital platforms; and the value-add that social media bring and that prospective buyers need to negotiate. Because the pharmacy industry has evolved in so many directions, particularly where technology is concerned, Natalie explains why it’s more important than ever to have a trusted adviser help navigate the process. The conversation wraps up with a run-down on Medici Capital’s menu of upcoming events offering networking opportunities and education about the online marketplace and myriad digital platforms that affect both the purchase and seamless transfer of pharmacies in today’s world.

Topics Covered:

  • A bit of background about Natalie and how she came to work in the “family business,” brokering pharmacies throughout Australia as well as running industry-related conferences and events.
  • A brief introduction to Attain and the evolution in brokering since Natalie first went to work in the pharmacy industry 15 years ago.
  •  How pharmacies come to change hands and the increasingly open marketing and overall transparency that have resulted from various technological advances, most notably the availability of online listings.
  • A tip for prospective buyers: Stay in regular touch with brokers because not everything is readily visible and listed online.
  • The process by which pharmacies are brokered – and how it has changed due diligence and the ways in which prospective buyers can access information.
  • Sellers who maintain up-to-date, cloud-based accounting systems are ahead of the game when it comes to marketing their pharmacies – often with more favorable financial outcomes.
  • Transferring technology accounts (such as internet, social media and point of sale services) and how to avoid pitfalls to a smooth transition.
  • It’s very important to ensure that social media accounts, which have become more and more prevalent, are factored into terms of sale.
  • The digital checklist: Getting longer and longer. Technology makes many things easier but at the same time introduces more variables to consider.
  • Escripts, loyalty points, newsletters, social media platforms, online sales, booking systems – all aspects of a sale that must be taken into account.
  • The importance of seeking counsel from trusted advisors with expertise in the sale and acquisition of pharmacies since there are many nuances and the terrain is often very unfamiliar.
  • All about, an online listing service for medical and accounting practices that offers a comprehensive marketplace for medical market opportunities. Listings are also available through Natalie’s company Attain.
  • Medici Capital’s many event and conference offerings for pharmacists interested in exploring topics ranging from women in the industry to entrepreneurial education to partnerships of all kinds.

Key Quotes:

  • “Because it’s such a tight-knit industry … a lot of pharmacies are sold off-market.” (03:05)
  • “There are a lot more brokers using technology to allow us to communicate better with potential pharmacy buyers, whether they be current owners or first-time buyers. And that’s creating a much more transparent marketplace, which I think is fantastic for everyone.” (04:17)
  • “The fact that the majority of information now is already coming in electronic form means that it’s much easier from a timing point of view to have it all ready to go.” (08:30)
  • The transfer of technology is a really critical (step) … that can cause problems post-sale.” (12:03)
  • “Each year there are more and more things that have to transfer and tick boxes that we have to make sure are complete so that when settlement is done you are ready to go.” (15:52)
  • “Often you buy a pharmacy only once or twice in your career … so it’s really important that you use advisers and rely on their experience.” (19:52)
  • “It’s easy to miss minor details (in a sale) that can have a big impact.” (20:26)
  • “It’s really important, that education piece, to ensuring pharmacists – both owners and future owners – are educated and informed so they can make the best decisions possible. (26:06)

Social Media Clips:

  • The ways in which technologies have transformed due diligence and the process of purchasing a pharmacy through the use of virtual data rooms. (06:23-07:38)
  • In addition to other technology systems, social media can present a “bit of a minefield” when it comes to the smooth transfer of pharmacy business operations. (13:07-13:56)  
  • Technology smooths the process, but at the same time adds steps and variables to consider and address. (16:35-16:50)
  • Confidentiality requires that sales are kept confidential even from staff up until the last moment, which has implications for transitioning into a new operation. (19:11-19:42)
  • Medici Capital-sponsored events, what they offer and what’s ahead post-Covid19. (24:46-25:58)

Links for Natalie Sirianni:

(Company Website):

Natalie’s Bio


Medici Capital Events

Pharmacy View/Sponsor Contacts: Scott at LinkedIn

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Episode 24