HANGZHOU, China, Oct. 13, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- China Jo-Jo Drugstores, Inc. (NASDAQ CM: CJJD) (the "Company" or "China Jo-Jo"), a leading China-based retail, wholesale and online distributor of pharmaceutical and health care products through its own online and retail pharmacies, announced preliminary half year fiscal 2016 sales estimates for the Company's official branded online pharmacy through www.dada360.com, growing 438% year over year, consolidated gross profit margin was a record 25%.
China Jo-Jo's online sales are principally driven by four categories of products including: medical devices, OTC drugs, toiletries and nutritional supplements through the presence of 6 e-pharmacy platforms online, including the Company's official branded website and marketplaces in Alibaba and JD.com. The Company is at the forefront of supply chain management and B2C sales in the fast growing online pharmacy space in China. The Company's online pharmacy sales for the last four years has been led by Jo-Jo's flagship store through Alibaba's marketplace, however for the month of September, 2015, sales from China Jo-Jo's own B2C website surpassed sales from the flagship store, which is indicative of the great demand for online pharmacy services in China. Additionally, sales fromChina Jo-Jo's branded e-pharmacy storefront in Alibaba's marketplace, increased by 130% in the first half of fiscal 2016.
Currently, sales from China Jo-Jo's e-commerce platforms represent 30% of the overall sales from its physical retail stores, which increased by 10% as compared to last year; achieving expected internal sales targets for fiscal year 2016 to date. Primary reasons for the rapid growth in China Jo-Jo's e-pharmacy business are the unmet demand for competitively priced shopping alternatives for which the Company carries roughly 8,000 products across its retail and online businesses. For the half year period, a major contributing factor to adoption of online sales is the web traffic driven to our B2C sites from "private insurance card" member holders. Private insurance cards are a fast growing segment of the Company's business whereby member incentives for card holders include discounts, promotions and prescription reimbursements from large private insurance carriers in China. The number of qualified customers utilizing commercially available private insurance cards in this period was up 20% to roughly 220,000 participants while the variety of products available online increased 50% year over year.
China Jo-Jo believes that a main driver of its business, in particular, its e-pharmacy business is the rapid expansion of private health insurance and reform in China. Private commercial health insurance in China now accounts for less than 5% of all of the market for which the Chinese government is encouraging to grow. The Company continues to tap into this growing market through agreements that allow for exclusivity or preferred provider of pharmacy benefits which are ultimately driving transactions to the Company's official online pharmacy pages as well as retail stores.
Mr. Qi Li, president of China Jo-Jo commented, "2015 has ushered in a new era in China and the launch of nascent but rapidly growing online pharmacy industry. We expect continued success as the industry matures, creating an evolved ecosystem to service the needs of our customers for many years to come."
Currently, China continues to develop the online pharmacy industry and the class of products which can be sold is evolving in accordance with the government's ability to oversee the industry. China's Food and Drug Administration and Social Security Bureau is studying and formulating rules that will allow the industry to flourish while ensuring the safety of medicine in China. As of recent, the Chinese Ministry of Commerce has encouraged pharmacies to move forward with online to offline, "O2O", sales in order to meet the growing demands and ability to efficiently distribute pharmaceutical products to consumers. O2O services encourages consumers to search and pay for products online that are available for pickup "offline" locally.
About China Jo-Jo Drugstores, Inc.
China Jo-Jo Drugstores, Inc., through its own retail drugstores, wholesale distributor and online pharmacy, is a leading retailer and wholesale distributor of pharmaceutical and healthcare products in China. As of June 30, 2015, the Company had 59 retail pharmacies in Zhejiang Province, China. The Company's wholesale subsidiary not only supplies its retail stores, but also distributes drug and other healthcare products to other drugstores and drug vendors. The Company routinely posts important information on its corporate websites at www.jiuzhou-drugstore.com (Chinese) and www.chinajojodrugstores.com (English).
Forward Looking Statement
Statements in this press release regarding the Company that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements and are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual future events or results to differ materially from such statements. Any such forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to, financial guidance, are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as "believe," "expect," "estimate," "may," "will," "should," "project," "plan," "seek," "intend," "anticipate," the negatives thereof, or comparable terminology. Such statements typically involve risks and uncertainties and may include financial projections or information regarding the progress of new product development. It is routine for the Company's internal projections and expectations to change as the quarter and year progresses, and therefore it should be clearly understood that the internal projections and beliefs upon which the Company bases its expectations may change. Although these expectations may change, the Company is under no obligation to inform you if they do. Actual results could differ materially from the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements as a result of numerous factors, including the risks associated with the effect of changing economic conditions in the People's Republic of China, variations in cash flow, reliance on collaborative retail partners and on new product development, variations in new product development, risks associated with rapid technological change, and the potential of introduced or undetected flaws and defects in products. Readers are referred to the reports and documents filed from time to time by the Company with the Securities and Exchange Commission for a discussion of these and other important risk factors that could cause actual results to differ from those discussed in forward-looking statements. Other than as required under the securities laws, the Company does not assume a duty to update these forward-looking statements.