Chinese E-pharma Platform Dingdang Health Raises $220 Million to Expand O2O Strategy

Chinese online-to-offline (O2O) medicine platform Dingdang Health has raised $220 million in its latest financing round led by TPG Capital Asia, the company announced on Tuesday.

The funding was co-led by New York-based healthcare investment firm OrbiMed and China-focused private equity fund Redview Capital. Other investors that participated in the funding round include Valliance, Orchid Asia affiliate Travis Global, Summer Capital and Yingke PE.

Dingdang plans to use the fresh funds to expand its O2O strategy to cover services including medical care, medicine delivery and medical insurance.

“Riding on the new trend of online medical care and medication services amid Covid-19, we aim at providing all-encompassing online services catering to various needs including consultation, drug purchase, chronic disease management and psychological consultation through product upgrades and technological innovation,” the firm’s founder and chairman Yang Wenlong said in a press release.

Established in 2014, Dingdang Health, known as Dingdang Kuaiyao in Chinese, guarantees that it can deliver over-the-counter medication to customers within 28 minutes. It currently operates in 10 provinces and cities across China in addition to providing online medical consultation and chronic diseases management services.

In October, Dingdang secured 1 billion yuan in a Series B+ round of financing from SoftBank’s China arm SBCVC, China Merchants Bank’s CMB International, insurance and financial service provider Taikang Insurance Group, Haier Biomedical, Longmen Investment and Sinopharm-CICC, a healthcare-based joint fund co-launched by state-owned Sinopharm Group and CICC Capital in 2016.

Zhuhai Dingdang Sihao Investment is the largest shareholder in Dingdang Kuaiyao with a 21.89% stake, while founder Yang owns 14.16%.

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“Dingdang Health’s business model perfectly combines both digitalization and healthcare. Leveraging big data and internet technologies, the company has created a pioneering self-operating model that provides online medical care and medicine delivery services. It links pharmaceutical companies, pharmacies and users in an all-encompassing ecosystem with timely and caring services. As the company evolves into an integrated healthcare provider, TPG is optimistic about its technology, model and potential, and will fully support its rapid growth to benefit more users,” TPG Capital Asia Managing Director Lydia Cai said.

According to media outlets Jiemian and 36Kr, Dingdang is currently undergoing a restructuring of its shareholder structure in preparation for an overseas IPO.

Demand for remote consultation and online retail drug sales has surged in the last year in response to the pandemic. Deep-pocketed rivals such as Ali Health, an affiliate of e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding, JD Health, a subsidiary of e-retailer, Tencent-backed WeDoctor and Ping An Insurance Group’s Ping An Good Doctor also offer same day or half day delivery to clients on top of consultation services, posing a threat to Dingdang Health’s share in the crowded telemedicine space.

China’s digital health care market jumped 44% to 314 billion yuan in 2020 and could skyrocket to 4.2 trillion yuan by 2030, according to American research firm Frost & Sullivan.