Looking to diversify, Indian pharma Dr. Reddy's Laboratories is mulling a move into retail pharmacies and even health insurance. The health insurance idea isn't as novel as it might appear; last month, India's Apollo Hospital Group teamed up with European insurer DKV to start a health insurance company on the subcontinent.
It's an expensive venture, though; insurance companies are required to put up 1 billion rupees, or about $24.5 million at current exchange rates. And though less than 3 percent of the Indian population is insured, there are 15 companies already offering health insurance.
Analysts say that opening retail pharmacies would be expensive for Dr. Reddy's, too - considering real estate, staffing, and the like. But the market is worth $5 billion, and the company does already have a nationwide distribution network.
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