Chewy INC (CHWY) said in a recent press release that it’s launching an online pharmaceutical platform for veterinarians to order prescription medications for their clients.
This new platform, called Practice Hub, is meant to provide vets with the ability to create, review and approve prescriptions for their patients. Chewy will handle the inventory, storage, fulfillment and shipping of these medications while giving the clinics money for each purchase. Prescriptions will then be shipped directly to customers.
This new platform will bring in another revenue stream for Chewy, with the intention of making selling and purchasing pet medication more convenient.
“We are excited to partner directly with veterinarians to improve the customer experience while simultaneously helping to grow revenues for their clinics,” said Sumit Singh, CEO of Chewy.
“The launch of Practice Hub is part of Chewy Health’s ecosystem and reinforces our commitment to support the veterinarian community across the country. This innovative, new platform utilizes technology to bring veterinarians to the forefront of e-commerce and delivers an experience their customers will love,” he said.
Practice Hub was announced two weeks after Chewy released its second quarter financials. These showed a 27% increase in sales, which was a disappointment for investors after analysts predicted higher growth.
The second quarter financials resulted in a ten percent drop in share prices. However, when Practice Hub was announced, Chewy stock rose 2% from the day before.
Justin Kleber, vice president and senior research associate at Robert W. Baird & Co., said Practice Hub, “Represents a win for all.”
“By simplifying the prescription management process and leveraging Chewy for order fulfillment/delivery, we see an opportunity for vets to reduce overhead costs and free up cash flow via lower inventory requirements,” Kleber said.
Chewy is not the first company to introduce online medication services. PetMed Express Inc. (PETS), is a long standing e-commerce site for customers to order medications both over the counter and prescribed for their pets. Veterinarians can create an account to fulfill orders online, or customers can send prescriptions from the website to their veterinarian during checkout.
Walmart Inc. (WMT) and Amazon.com Inc (AMZN) are two other major companies that also offer similar services, but Amazon does not offer customers the option to purchase prescription drugs for their pets.
There is not a release date for Practice Hub, but vets have been actively signing up to enroll by invitation only on the CHEWY website now.