From its humble beginnings, Mercury Drug has gone beyond expectations. Shortly after the liberation of Manila from Japanese occupation, Mariano Que, realizing the need of the people for medicines, bought with his hard earned of P100 of P1000 tablets of Sulfathiazole and sold it “patingi-tingi” for P1.00 per tablet in the sidewalks of Bambang, Manila. Sulfathiazole is a wonder drug that cures all during that time. From pushcart – peddling and with his previous working experience in a drugstore before the war, he eventually opened his first small drugstore in Bambang Street. Mercury drug has today grown into a vast network of over 700 company-owned and franchised stores nationwide.
Mercury Drug Stores Success
Mercury Drug believes that it owes its success to the millions of customers who have trusted and patronized the drugstore chain all throughout these years. Its feat could also not have been possible without its pool of professional and dedicated staff numbering close to 9,000 today. As a way of giving back to the people, Mercury Drug vows to bring quality, safe and affordable health-enhancing and life-saving medicines close to the public. In the first place, it is what the name Mercury Drug stands for. In roman methodology, Mercury is known as the god of commerce and manual skill.
Mercury remains committed to its name as seen on its corporate philosophy of total and speedy customer service: “To serve you, to have what you want, when you want it” Aside from bringing its chain of stores closer to the homes of the people, Mercury Drug has constantly endeavored to reach the hearts of the customers. To achieve this, Mercury Drug has taken pride in the introduction of many firsts in the drug retailing business, all in an effort to satisfy, please and further serve the people.
Mercury Drug Innovation
In 1945, it opened a drugstore and one of its innovations is to sell “tingi-tingi” or piece by piece to those who could not afford to buy a whole bottle of medicine. Realizing that not everyone could go to the drugstore, Mercury Drug introduced the first motorized customer delivery service in 1948. Four years later, it commenced the 17-hour, 7 days a week drugstore service; in 1963, the country’s first self-service drugstore; in 1965, the 24-hour, 7 days a week service; in 1967 , the first computerized temperature-controlled central warehouse; in 1969, the first drugstore chain to use biological refrigerators to preserve life-saving medicines and in 1976, the first drugstore chain to expand throughout Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. Mercury Drug believes that quality and life-saving medicines made affordable and accessible are as important today as it was then.
Now more than ever, it is committed to introducing enhanced services to better serve the customers father and wider, whoever and wherever they may be. For instance, Mercury Drug makes certain the availability of less common but life saving medical products such as serum, blood plasma, albumin and the like that are stored in a Bio-refrigerator. This would require Mercury Drug to invest on modern technology and to continuously upgrade its facilities in its head office, stores and distribution centers. Aside from pharmaceutical products, it now carries basic household necessities such as food, health and personal care products and others for the buying convenience of its customers. It has also incorporated value added facilities and services in many of its drugstores.
More and more branches are open on a 24-hour service all days of the week. Aside from consistently complying with the 20% discounts to senior citizens, Mercury Drug has also launched its “Suki” card, a customer program as a way of expressing gratitude to its loyal customers. As a drugstore with a heart, Mercury Drug has been conducting “Operation Bigay Lunas” every March 1, on their anniversary day together with its business associates. For the past decade, this annual and all-day free clinic catering to the less privelged provides medical consultations and free medicines to indigent patients in selected cities and municipalities nationwide.
This year alone, it served more than 130,000 benefeciaries in around 63 cities and municipalities. In 2002, Mercury Drug, in partnership with the Philippine business for social progress (PBSP), has launched a program that has been helping rural and urban marginalized communities nationwide to have access to potable water system within their communities through the artesian well project. The installation of this potable water system helped improve the quality of life of the beneficiaries by promoting better health and sanitation practices.
Strengths| * Offers “tingi-tingi” or piece by piece to those who could not afford to buy a bottle of medicine. * 24-hour, 7 days a week drugstore service. * First computerized temperature-controlled central warehouse. * Dominant market leader. * Has addition of groceries as a traffic builder. * Has order and pick-up service. * Offers Gamot Padala delivery service. * Expanding drug discounts for the country’s senior citizens. * Launched its “Suki” card, a customer program as a way of expressing gratitude to its loyal customers.| Weaknesses| |
Threats| * The Generic Pharmacy (TGP), became the first generics retail pharmacy. * Generics and low price strategy form an attractive combination in the Philippines considering that some 90% of the people of the Phil. belong to the DE class.|
1. Threats of new entrants/ exits
Because a lot of competencies are arise. Mercury Drug needs to improve their strategies. They need to maintain their popularity so that their loyal customers will not transfer to their competitors. Improve their services and offers more product that their customers need.
2. The Bargaining Power of Buyers
Since Mercury Drug is the leading and well known drugstore they need to maintain their image to their buyer or customer because if they not maintain their relationship with its buyer there are tendencies that their buyers will look for another drugstores that they can satisfy their needs and wants.
3. The Bargaining Power of Suppliers
Since the Mercury Drug expanded, the company needs a supplier who can distribute to them the raw materials that they needed. Like buyers Mercury Drug also needs to build relationship with their suppliers so that their suppliers will not be able to find new companies that they can supply their raw materials. 4. Threats of Substitute Products
Mercury Drug offers a branded products of medicines, but in generation right now lots of consumer buy a generic brand of medium which lead to one of the biggest problem that Mercury Drug are facing right now. Lots of new drugstore are offered a generic that is why Mercury Drug needs to improve more than products so that it maintain its loyal customers. 5. Threats of Segment Rivalry