1mg: Your Trusted Pharmacy Partner – Delivering Medicines Nationwide

When you search for any medicine on Google, you will find 1mg prominently in the top 3 search results. It is a platform that provides detailed information about every item, from the composition of medicines to their benefits and drawbacks. It is a platform that leads the way in both online and offline pharmaceutical markets. It started in 2015, and by 2022, it became a unicorn, meaning it became a billion-dollar company. Today, it has more than a thousand stores across the country.

In ‘Unicorn Dreams with Kushan Agrawal,’ we have Prashant Tandon, the CEO of 1mg, with us. We discuss 1mg’s journey, transformation, and the idea that turned into a successful business. So let’s get started.

Kushan: When did Tata 1mg start and how did it all begin? What was the idea behind its name?

Prashant Tandon: It was in 2009 when I and my co-founder Samir returned to India from the USA. We both believed that India had the potential to transform healthcare. We envisioned rapid development on a digital platform. Afterward, we collaborated with many doctors, working on software solutions tailored to their needs. This demonstrated that focusing on centrally produced healthcare products was essential.

In 2011, we initiated an e-commerce platform called Healthkart. In 2012, Healthkart Plus was launched. When it came to the company’s name, our brainstorming led us to the idea that it should be concise, fresh, and mobile-friendly. One of our team members suggested “100mg.”

At that point, I suggested changing it to “1mg” because we wanted to keep the name short and unique. We believed in sticking to a single-digit number. Afterward, in 2015, we established the company under the name “1mg” and began delivering medicines directly to people’s homes.

Kushan: What marketing strategies are you employing to attract customers?

Prashant Tandon: In the beginning, we primarily focused on marketing through our product quality and word of mouth. This approach brought us significant benefits. Today, we leverage various platforms for our promotions and branding. However, most of our substantial traffic still comes from content marketing.

Kushan: 1mg now offers diagnostic and wellness services as well. What’s the thinking behind this expansion?

Prashant Tandon: We’ve always been customer-focused, thinking about what the patients need. Our endeavor is to be a comprehensive healthcare platform where consumers can find more and more services. That’s why we have included diagnostics, pharmacy, and consultations.

Kushan: What are your plans for the company’s future?

Prashant Tandon: We continue to work both online and offline. We are venturing into insurance as well. We are running our pharmacies inside many hospitals. Besides, we are actively working in the insurance and corporate sectors. Our aim is that any consumer who wants to connect with us through our platform should find us readily available.

Kushan: Many athletes are entering the digital pharmacy market now. How do you plan to differentiate yourself and remain a market leader?

Prashant Tandon: We believe that healthcare is the most fundamental aspect of trust. Therefore, our focus has always been to gain the trust of patients and consumers. We continually center our efforts around performance. We put a heavy emphasis on problem-solving techniques.

Kushan: How does India’s healthcare infrastructure differ from other countries, and how rapidly is it evolving?

Prashant Tandon: India has many gaps in the healthcare sector. There’s a lack of physical infrastructure. There’s a significant disparity in doctor-patient ratios and healthcare quality. However, India is rapidly advancing in the digital space. The government is also taking steps. I believe that in the coming years, India will be at the forefront of healthcare management.

Kushan: What personal and business advice do you have for young entrepreneurs in the country?

Prashant Tandon: My advice to young entrepreneurs is to focus on optimization and self-confidence. In the coming years, there will be significant growth opportunities in India’s economy. Therefore, work hard and stay committed to your goals.

Kushan: Was there ever a time when you felt like you were on the verge of giving up, and how did you overcome difficult times?

Prashant Tandon: Entrepreneurial life is full of ups and downs. There are times when things are tougher than others. In the beginning, we heavily relied on Google. Once Google suspended our AdSense account, it had a significant impact on our business. We had to face many challenges during that time. However, we persevered, and everything gradually fell into place over a period of three to four months.

Kushan: What are your hobbies? How do you prefer to spend your free time?

Prashant Tandon: These days, I spend time with my two children. I also enjoy spending time with friends and family. I’m fond of recreational activities, and I regularly play table tennis and basketball.

Anusha Aggarwal

My name is Anusha Aggarwal. With a deep fascination for the science behind health, hair care, skin care, and body care, I'm a dedicated writer committed to helping readers achieve optimal wellness. Through years of research and personal experience, I provide expert insights into the latest trends and techniques in the beauty and wellness.