India’s healthcare business worth Rs 73,000 crore offers huge business opportunities. Not only it is a recession-proof business growing at 13 per cent annually, but its rising demand is continuing to outstrip supply. Franchising in health care segment is widely popular all over the world but is still in its nascent stage in India. According to the Confederation of India Industry (CII), 17 per cent of world business is through franchising; while in India it is less than three per cent. However, heath care franchise business is yet to boom in India with many organised player already leading the way. The article gives an insight about the factors influencing the growth of heath care and franchise opportunities.
Factors contributing for the growth
Health care franchise offers great returns. Some of the key trends influencing health care franchise are as follows:
Rise in disposal income: People are willing to spend high without compromising on the quality of diagnosis.
Change in consumer behaviour: People are intelligent enough to purchase drugs from renowned companies.
Increase in chronic ailments: Rise in number of chronic diseases such as diabetes, asthma, hypertension etc is creating a need for better health care facilities.
Health insurance: Health insurance policy is in great demand. People are becoming more aware due to various pre mature aliments. Thus demand of health insurance is also on rise.
Players in heath care franchise
Large number of healthcare brands is offering great franchise prospects for the aspirants. The vanguard of this new frontier is Dr Lal PathLabs which has 60 labs, out of which nine are franchised. They have 935 franchised collection centres and 65 service patient centre out of which 30 are franchised. The company is further planning to open more than 100 collection and patient service centres and are open to franchising across India. Dr Reddy another prominent name in health care is planning to double the group’s bed capacity from 5,000 to 10,000 with minimal capex through the franchise route.
SRL Religare offers 4,000 kinds of tests at its labs and holds 10 per cent market share of the pathology industry. At present it has 18 franchised outlets. Perfect Wellness, a healthcare division of FX Group with one franchised centre, offers ideal business opportunity for the aspirants, followed by Thyrocare Technologies Limited, Sky Healers India Pvt. Ltd, Apollo clinic and many more. Franchising as a business model, promote rapid market expansion, while conserving capital and at the same time utilising the entrepreneurial potential of the individual franchisees, thus compelling more numbers of organised players to foray into the health care franchise business.
To be a part of the booming heath care sector, the aspiring franchisees requires the following requisites:
• Must be a graduate
• Local market knowledge
• Experience in health care segment
• Ready for long-term association
• Sound financial potential
The initial investment required to be a part of the growing health care franchise ranges from Rs 40 to 75 lakh and require an approx. 1300-1400 sq.ft of space. Fulfilling the eligibility criteria of owing a franchise, an aspiring franchisee can get assistance in site selection to set-up and start operation, layout and design. A comprehensive training is also provided to all the franchisees on service operations, standard check-up procedures, accounting, inventory control, etc, with post-opening franchise support by providing operational manual, on going R&D, patient check-up and customer service and other related market development initiatives.
Thus, with changing trends in India, health care sector is set to boom and franchising a heath care business can offer high returns for the aspirants.