Zur Rose Group reinforces European market leadership by rigorously implementing the growth and platform strategy

Zur Rose Group AG / Key word(s): Half Year Results
Zur Rose Group reinforces European market leadership by rigorously implementing the growth and platform strategy

19.08.2020 / 07:00

Press release

2020 Half-Year Results

Zur Rose Group reinforces European market leadership by rigorously implementing the growth and platform strategy

- First half earnings on target; profitability improved year on year

- Realisation of the reorganisation in Germany: Central management across all German brands

- Growth and platform strategy continue with acquisition of Apotal and TeleClinic, Germany's leading telemedicine provider

- Ongoing market digitalisation and mandatory e-prescriptions in Germany from 2022 will accelerate growth

- Partnership network in Germany expanded, laying strong foundations for spread of

The Zur Rose Group continued its growth and platform strategy in the first half of 2020 as planned. Including medpex, sales were up 9.2 per cent year on year in local currency terms. The Group has taken over the e-commerce activities of Apotal, marking a considerable further expansion of the number one position in Germany with an additional 1.1 million customers. Economies of scale will also create a solid basis for launching digital healthcare offerings, including electronic prescriptions, and further expanding the Zur Rose healthcare ecosystem. In the second half of the year Zur Rose will continue to press ahead with the initiatives to scale up the existing e-prescription projects. In the first seven months of the year the Group raised a gross CHF 388 million to finance the growth and digitalisation projects by issuing a convertible bond and conducting a capital increase.

As already announced on 16 July 2020, including medpex sales the Zur Rose Group achieved revenue of CHF 809.9 million in the first half of 2020, equivalent to growth of 9.2 per cent in local currency terms. EBITDA was minus CHF 24.5 million. This was negatively affected by CHF 13.0 million of expenses in connection with acquisitions and integration. Adjusted EBITDA was CHF 8.9 million ahead of the previous year, partly due to a significant increase in the gross margin. The adjusted EBITDA margin before expenditure on the e-prescription and European expansion growth initiatives was minus 0.4 per cent, within the forecast target range for the full year.

Central management across all brands in Germany
As part of the reorganization, including centralized management across all brands in Germany, the Zur Rose Group is bundling the service functions with its own personnel and operating resources in Heerlen and Mannheim. Vitalsana, which like DocMorris has its head office in Heerlen, will be legally and economically, including employees and customers, merged with DocMorris and the Vitalsana site closed down. The marketing and non-pharma customer service divisions of Eurapon Pharmahandel GmbH, Bremen, will be combined at the DocMorris site in Heerlen. The marketing work carried out for various companies in the Germany segment by Zur Rose Pharma GmbH, Halle an der Saale, will be taken on by the Zur Rose sites in Heerlen and Mannheim. Eurapon Pharmahandel GmbH and Zur Rose Pharma GmbH have developed socially acceptable solutions in the form of severance packages to take adequate account of the interests of the 51 employees in total who are affected.

Acquisition of Apotal with access to additional 1.1 million customers
By acquiring the mail-order activities of Apotal the Zur Rose Group is continuing to drive ahead consolidation in the largest European market for mail-order medicines, Germany. In 2019, Apotal generated e-commerce pharmacy revenues of EUR 157 million. Once they have given their consent, additional 1.1 million additional customers will move over to Zur Rose. Including the customers of Apotal, the number of active Zur Rose Group customers[1] will rise more than 50 per cent year on year from six million to over nine million.

Continuing to press ahead with the platform strategy
The Zur Rose Group is continuing to press ahead with the platform strategy - at a time when the coronavirus crisis is proving to be an additional driver for digitalisation and acceptance of digital healthcare services is rising sharply, partly accelerated by the distancing rules associated with COVID-19 and changing personal preferences towards digital. The Zur Rose Group firmly believes that this digital transformation will remain in effect even after the distancing rules have ended.

The main focus is on creating a proprietary healthcare ecosystem networking qualified providers with products and digital services. The acquisition of TeleClinic GmbH, Germany's leading telemedicine provider, announced on 16 July 2020, is a key first building block in this strategy and adds telemedical services to the offering. Telemedicine is a decisive and convenient solution all along the digital patient pathway, for both acute and chronic illnesses.

The launch of the DocMorris marketplace app is planned for the fourth quarter of 2020. With the choice of having prescriptions filled locally or by an online pharmacy, the app gives customers a user-friendly application with additional services: for example, they have direct access to the telemedicine offering and a selection of different supplier and ordering options. The app also enables purchases of non-prescription drugs as well as beauty and personal care products with digital payment options.

Start of the nationwide launch of e-prescriptions in Germany
From 1 January 2022 it will be mandatory in Germany for prescription medicines to be prescribed electronically. This legislative framework paves the way for all market participants to launch electronic prescriptions nationwide. The Zur Rose Group is prepared for these digitalisation steps and is already setting standards today through its subsidiary eHealth-Tec GmbH, the market leader in digitalising the prescription process. eHealth-Tec networks doctors, patients and pharmacies all the way through to billing, making it possible for the first time to have a fully integrated digital prescription process without media breaks.

As an e-prescription technology partner to the remote treatment service of health insurer Techniker Krankenkasse (TK), eHealth-Tec already connects more than one thousand pharmacies via its e-prescription solution. A shared interface allows more than 50 per cent of local pharmacies across the country to be technically integrated with various pharmacy services. DocMorris joined the TK project in June 2020, allowing TK members to have e-prescriptions filled by mail-order. With further health insurers joining the cooperation with TK, 35 per cent of all people with statutory health insurance in Germany could now already use e-prescriptions.

In June 2020 eHealth-Tec also entered into a strategic partnership with medatixx, a leading supplier of software solutions for practising doctors. Its software solutions for practices are used by 38,000 doctors across Germany, who will be able to access the eHealth-Tec e-prescription solution from the third quarter onwards as part of a multi-stage roll-out. This is equivalent to a market share of around 27 per cent.

The recent acquisitions have strengthened the market position of the Zur Rose Group. Management is expecting growth, including the sales of medpex, Apotal and TeleClinic, of more than 10 per cent and to break even at the adjusted EBITDA level before expenditure on additional growth initiatives, especially in electronic prescriptions and European opportunities, for the full year 2020. From next year onwards the Group anticipates significant growth in prescription drugs and confirms the medium-term revenue outlook of more than CHF 3 billion. The medium-term EBITDA margin target, adjusted for growth initiatives, is around 8 per cent. The introduction of mandatory electronic prescriptions from 2022 and the implementation of the healthcare eco-system will additionally create relevant potential for revenue and profit.


Key financials, in CHF million 1.1.-30.6.2020 1.1.-30.6.2019 Change
Net revenue incl. medpex 809,921 771,272 5.0%
Net revenue incl. medpex, in local currency     9.2%
Net revenue 697,997 668,360 4.4%
Net revenue, in local currency     8.2%
EBITDA after adjusting extraordinary costs and before expenditure on growth initiatives -2,616 n.a. n.a.
in % of revenue -0.4% n.a.  
EBITDA after adjusting extraordinary costs -11,464 -20,391 n.m.
in % of revenue -1.6% -3.1%  
Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) -24,454 -2,456 n.m.
in % of revenue -3.5% -0.4%  
Earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) -41,969 -17,084 n.m.
in % of revenue -6.0% -2.6%  
Net operating income -52,337 -17,085 n.m.
in % of revenue -7.5% -2.6%  
  30.6.2020 31.12.2019 Change
Equity 359,406 405,542 -11.4%
in % of total assets 33.2% 40.9%  

At 2 p.m. CET today there will be a telephone conference in English for analysts and the media.
Dial-in numbers: CH: +41 44 580 65 22 | DE: +49 69 201 744 220 | UK: +44 203 009 24 70 | USA: +1 877 423 08 30
Conference ID: 89155081#
The associated presentation (without audio) is available at:
Alternatively, the presentation can be followed via live audio webcast using the following link:

Investors and analyst contact
Christoph Herrmann, Head of Investor Relations
Email:, phone: +41 58 810 11 49

Media contact
Lisa Lüthi, Head of Group Communications
Email:, phone: +41 52 724 08 14

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29 April 2021 Annual General Meeting

Zur Rose Group

The Swiss Zur Rose Group is Europe's largest e-commerce pharmacy and one of the leading medical wholesalers in Switzerland. It also operates the leading marketplace in southern Europe for consumer health, beauty and personal care products commonly sold in pharmacies. The company is internationally present with strong brands, including Germany's best-known pharmacy brand DocMorris. Zur Rose employs more than 1,800 people at sites in Switzerland, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain and France. In 2019 it generated revenue of CHF 1,569 million (including medpex) and currently has around nine million active customers in core European markets.

With its business model, the Zur Rose Group offers high-quality, safe and cost-effective pharmaceutical care. It is also characterized by the continuous further development of digital services in the field of drug management using AI-supported applications and new technology. Zur Rose is furthermore actively driving ahead its positioning as a comprehensive provider of healthcare services. By creating a digital healthcare platform - the Zur Rose ecosystem - it networks products and digital services from qualified providers. The contribution made by Zur Rose will be to take these offerings to customers and patients and to make a relevant selection. The aim is to provide people with a seamless accompaniment and empower them to manage their own health optimally using products and digital solutions.

The shares of Zur Rose Group AG are listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange (securities number 4261528, ISIN CH0042615283, ticker ROSE). For further information please see

[1] Customers supplied by the Zur Rose Group, either directly or through its partners, including the Apotal e-commerce business.

End of Corporate News

Language: English
Company: Zur Rose Group AG
Walzmühlestrasse 60
8500 Frauenfeld
Phone: +41 52 724 08 14
ISIN: CH0042615283
Listed: SIX Swiss Exchange
EQS News ID: 1120269

End of News EQS Group News Service

1120269  19.08.2020