June 28, 2018 / 3:36 PM / 5 months ago

Bitter pill for U.S. drug supply chains as Amazon enters the scene

FILE PHOTO: The logo of Amazon.com Inc is seen in Sao Paulo, Brazil October 17, 2017. REUTERS/Paulo Whitaker/File Photo

** Pharma supply chain hit by Amazon’s move to buy online pharmacy PillPack, which offers pre-sorted medicine doses

** Drug retailers Walgreens Boots Alliance, CVS Health, Rite Aid down 8-10 pct; Drug wholesalers McKesson, Cardinal Health, AmerisourceBergen 5-7 pct

** Pharmacy benefit manager Express Scripts down 2.9 pct

** Amazon’s move has cost drug store and medical wholesaler investors around $19 billion in losses today, while Amazon has gained about $5.2 bln

** “Amazon’s acquisition of PillPack is a warning shot in what is about to become a major battle within the pharmacy space,” said Neil Saunders, managing director of GlobalData Retail

** The deal also sent shares of dental suppliers Henry Schein and Patterson Cos lower around 4 pct

** Health insurers including UnitedHealth down nearly 2 pct; Aetna, which has agreed to be bought by CVS, was down 2.6 pct and Cigna, which has agreed to buy ESRX, was down 3 pct

** Share movement across the healthcare sector echoed the reaction of the retailers when AMZN agreed to buy Whole Foods last year

Reporting by Savio D'Souza and Ankur Banerjee

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