HealthWise and EverOne, Two More Healthcare-Related Amazon Exclusive “Our Brands,” Launch

As we continue to track Amazon’s healthcare efforts, we are seeing two new healthcare-related Amazon Exclusive “Our Brands” now live on Amazon.com.

The first is Healthwise, which currently only lists one product for sale, the HealthWise Maximum Strength Pain Relief 4% Lidocaine Patch. We are not totally clear on who is making this Healthwise brand as there are multiple other Healthwise brands out there – one possibility is this Healthwise that makes dietary supplements, but we’re not yet sure.

The second is EverOne, which is currently selling this first aid EverOne Instant Cold Pack, in addition to several nitrile gloves. The item is launching with several Vine reviews. Based on trademark records, EverOne appears to be produced by Brooklyn-based EverReady First Aid, a maker of first aid kids for industrial, commercial, residential, and military use.

 

Healthwise joins other OTC medicine Amazon “Our Brands” including Basic Care (Perrigo), SoundHealth (Bestco), Wellness Basics (PL Developments), and Primary Health (Aurohealth), whose launch we identified in November. EverOne joins SimplySafe and SupplyMaster as Amazon Exclusive brands selling nitrile gloves under Amazon’s “Our Brands” program.

Both Healthwise and EverOne have been added to the TJI Amazon Brand Database. For more, subscribe to the TJI Briefing.

Amazon Launches Private Label Medical Scrubs, Gets Into Work Uniforms

Amazon’s private label clothing efforts are well-known, but to date they’ve been focused on consumer products. Now, we’re seeing what we believe is Amazon’s first foray into private label occupational uniforms with the release of a new line of Amazon Essentials brand medical scrubs.

The items we’re seeing that Amazon has quietly launched are:

Each item is available in around 15 color variations. The women’s versions are both near the top of the list in Amazon’s New Releases in Women’s Uniforms, Work & Safety list.

Medical scrubs are about a $10 billion industry in the US. Chatsworth, CA-based Strategic Partners owns 40% of the market, according to a 2017 Bloomberg report. Strategic Partners’ Cherokee and Dickies brand medical apparel are some of the best selling work clothing items on Amazon. Strategic Partners also owns and operates Scrubs Magazine.

Los Angeles-based Figs became the first DTC brand to sell scrubs directly to consumers a few years ago, and reportedly saw $100 in revenues last year.

Several B2B Amazon Exclusive “Our Brands” have also launched recently offering various industrial products, including SimplySafe and SupplyMaster, which offer nitrile and other disposable gloves for exams, food preparation, and other occupational purposes.

Big picture, Amazon says its B2B healthcare supplies business is experiencing “rocket ship” growth. We would only expect this to continue. For more on Amazon’s healthcare efforts, see the TJI Amazon Healthcare Overview.

Stay tuned to TJI as Amazon continues to ramp up its private label and exclusive brand selection across categories. Check out the TJI Amazon Brand Database, and track Amazon’s efforts on an ongoing basis by subscribing to the TJI Briefing.

Amazon Releases Alexa.Health Developer Tools for Tracking Baby Activities

Much like driving, baby care is an excellent use case for hands-free computing. As such, Amazon is investing in tools to help developers build Alexa skills to track baby activities.

Amazon has announced a new API for Alexa called the Baby Activity Skill API. Per Amazon, “The Alexa.Health API is a set of interfaces that allows you to build baby activity skills for your health and wellness apps and devices. Your customers can manage health and wellness data for themselves, their children, and other family members by talking to Alexa.” Amazon has created specific APIs around tracking weight, sleep, diaper changes, and infant feeding.

It’s another step in the overall tact Amazon continues to take with the Alexa ecosystem: building API sets tailored to the needs of various product categories to optimize for new usage scenarios. In this case, it’s activity logging for early childhood.

With the Baby Activity Skill API, you can build Alexa skills and that enable your customers to easily log and query activity information using just their voice. Voice is a powerful tool that increases the accessibility of your service. It can help increase consistent input and make your service more valuable, increasing usage and retention of customers.

Here are some sample utterances:
User: Alexa, Jane woke up from a 3-hour nap.
User: Alexa, log a bottle feeding of 6 ounces for Jane.
User: Alexa, when was the last diaper change?
User: Alexa, what was Jane’s average weight last month?

Hatch Baby, a maker of “smart nursery” products, also announced that it has received investment from Amazon’s Alexa Fund.

We would expect to see more Alexa integrations into hardware and software in the baby category in the year ahead. While some will be hesitant to adopt tools like these, as parents and caretakers begin to use Amazon services for more aspects of child care, the Baby Activity Skill API creates another vector for engagement and ultimately sales.

Amazon Business Hiring New Senior Vendor Manager for Professional Healthcare

As Amazon continues to grow its B2B healthcare efforts, it is seeking a new senior vendor manager in its professional healthcare supplies and scientific categories, according to job posts.

The position is Sr. Vendor Manager, Professional Healthcare & Scientific and was posted yesterday. The position description reads:

The Professional Healthcare & Scientific team is looking for a self-driven Senior Vendor Management candidate that has a proven track record of delivering results in a B2B industry. He/She will play a critical role in managing strategic suppliers to drive the profitability and topline performance for their category and partnering with the Amazon Business team to drive growing of the strategically important Healthcare and Education customer segments.

The Senior Vendor Manager is responsible for managing the full scope of their category and vendor portfolio, driving the topline performance and profitability for their business. He/she owns the end-to-end vendor relationship, from signing new vendors, leading negotiations, managing promotional activities and resolving operational or logistics issues that impact our customer. He/she will leverage key metrics to develop customer insights to drive innovation, and will leverage these insights to drive vendor participation in marketing, merchandising and promotional activities in order to drive overall business growth.

Amazon is also seeking to grow its B2B healthcare sales efforts in Europe. In another new job post titled Sr. Product Manager, Amazon Business Verticals Expansion, Amazon says:

Amazon Business is looking to enter various verticals such as healthcare, public sector and education. Our mission is to make Amazon Business the preferred shopping destination for these customers. We seek to understand the specific needs of these customers, vendors, and sellers in order to deliver innovative solutions to serve their needs. We are looking for a talented product manager to build our offerings to these customers. You will define the needs and requirements of these customers and will work with our product management team to deliver. You will also work directly with our category teams to ensure we have the right selection for our customers.

Last week, Amazon posted similar positions on the consumer healthcare supplies vendor management side, for new Senior Vendor Managers for Healthcare and Medical DevicesAmazon also continues to hire for 20+ positions in its PillPack pharmacy subsidiary. 

Amazon is making increasingly substantial moves in healthcare. For more on Amazon’s growing healthcare efforts, see our TJI Amazon Healthcare Overview or subscribe to the TJI Briefing.

Amazon Hiring New Senior Vendor Managers for Healthcare and Medical Devices

As Amazon continues to grow its healthcare efforts, it is seeking new senior vendor managers in its consumer healthcare supplies and medical device categories, according to job posts.

The positions are Sr. Vendor Manager, Medical Devices and Sr. Vendor Manager, Healthcare. Both have been posted recently. The healthcare position reads:

Amazon is looking for a passionate candidate with the proven ability to build and drive the healthcare category within the Health and Personal Care (HPC) business. In this role, your charter will be to build Amazon’s relationship with key vendors in the healthcare OTC (over the counter) industry to grow our selection and drive topline for the category.

The Senior Vendor Manager is responsible for managing the full scope of their category and vendor portfolio, driving the topline performance and profitability for their business. The role will also work with multiple product groups and leaders to grow sales on Amazon.com. He/she owns the end-to-end vendor relationship, from signing new vendors, leading negotiations, managing promotional activities and resolving operational or logistics issues that impact our customer. He/she will leverage key metrics to develop customer insights to drive innovation, and will leverage these insights to drive vendor participation in marketing, merchandising and promotional activities in order to drive overall business growth.

Meanwhile, Amazon is also hiring for 20 positions in its PillPack pharmacy subsidiary. The positions at PillPack include software engineers in Boston, a pharmacy quality manager in Phoenix, a senior financial analyst in Seattle, and a senior billing manager in Manchester, New Hampshire.

Amazon is making increasingly substantial moves in healthcare. For more on Amazon’s growing healthcare efforts, see our TJI Amazon Healthcare Overview or subscribe to the TJI Briefing.

Amazon Launches 5-Blade “MotionSphere” Razor, Many More Health & Personal Care Products Under Its Solimo Private Label Brand

Continuing its expansion into private label health and personal care products, Amazon has launched several new items under its Solimo brand in recent days and weeks.

Of note is a new Solimo 5-Blade MotionSphere Razor for Men, which sells with two cartridges for $7.49. It launched with several Vine reviews. Of course, Amazon is selling replacement blades as well, at 8 for $15.99. Those price points are generally lower than high-end 5-blade razors from Gillete, Schick, Bic, and others.

In addition, Amazon has launched a barrage of new Solimo private label health and personal care products, including:

These will compete with similar products from national brand owners including Johnson & Johnson, Proctor & Gamble, Neutrogena, Olay, Dove, Nivea, Chattem, & more.

Solimo is one of Amazon’s fastest growing private label brands, both in the US and around the world. It has added dozens of products over the last couple of months across a variety of product categories.

Amazon now sells “Our Brand” items under 135 private label brands and over 330 Amazon Exclusive brands. For more on Amazon’s private label efforts, subscribe to TJI Briefing and check out the TJI Amazon Brand Database.

Introducing the TJI Amazon Healthcare Overview

While Amazon has historically been known as an online retailer and cloud services provider, it is making increasingly substantial moves in healthcare. In our view, the healthcare category represents one of the largest growth opportunities for Amazon over the coming decade.

That’s why we’ve created the TJI Amazon Healthcare Overview. The TJI Amazon Healthcare Overview aims to outline both what Amazon is doing now across product categories and where Amazon could be going in the future. It is intended to be a starting point for researchers and analysts to navigate the breadth and depth of Amazon’s healthcare initiatives.

For professionals interested in tracking Amazon’s healthcare efforts on an ongoing basis, subscribe to TJI Briefing, which covers the latest developments on at Amazon from around the world.

AWS Launches Amazon Comprehend Medical, Offering NLP Specific to Healthcare

AWS has just announced the launch of Amazon Comprehend Medical, a version of Amazon Comprehend specific to the needs healthcare customers.

Last year, Amazon launched Comprehend, a NLP service for “language detection, entity categorization, sentiment analysis, and key phrase extraction.” However, Amazon says that, “Given the very specific nature of clinical documents, healthcare customers have asked us to build them a version of Amazon Comprehend tailored to their unique needs.”

Amazon says that Amazon Comprehend Medical adds the following to the standard Comprehend service:

  • Support for entity extraction and entity traits on a vast vocabulary of medical terms: anatomy, conditions, procedures, medications, abbreviations, etc.
  • An entity extraction API (detect_entities) trained on these categories and their subtypes.
  • A Protected Health Information extraction API (detect_phi) able to locate contact details, medical record numbers, etc.

Amazon’s Julien Simon provides the following example of how Amazon Comprehend Medical works. First, let’s take the following input text to start.

Here’s how Amazon Comprehend Medical processes the document: “Entities are extracted and highlighted: we see personal information in orange, medication in red, anatomy in purple and medical conditions in green.”

“Personal Identifiable Information is correctly picked up. This is particularly important for researchers who need to anonymize documents before exchanging or publishing them. Also, ‘rash’ and ‘sleeping trouble’ are correctly detected as medical conditions diagnosed by the doctor (‘Dx’ is shorthand for ‘diagnosis’). Medications are detected as well,” Simon says.

Simon goes on to explain how AMC can figure out abbreviations specific to physician terminology and is able to correctly understand complex relationships.

Overall, Amazon Comprehend Medical offers healthcare providers and related professionals more reasons to adopt AWS as their cloud service provider. Amazon is investing heavily in intelligent applications to help make health care professionals more efficient.

The launch of Amazon Comprehend Medical is the latest in a string of healthcare-related initiatives at Amazon.

Above Images: AWS

Amazon’s New PillPack Branding: “Earth’s Most Customer Centric Pharmacy.” Where Will PillPack Go From Here?

It’s been about two months since Amazon’s acquisition of PillPack closed. Amazon paid about $750 million (net of cash) for the online pharmacy business.

On Amazon’s 3Q earnings call in October, Amazon SVP and CFO Brian Olsavsky said of PillPack, “Right now our focus is on learning from them and innovating with them on how best to meet customer needs over time.”

How might PillPack be evolving now that it’s a part of Amazon?

New Branding

One, Amazon has created some new brand positioning for PillPack.  In job descriptions, PillPack is now referring to itself as, “Earth’s most customer centric Pharmacy.” It’s a variation on Amazon’s own brand strategy.

Amazon has been using the “customer-centric” branding since it launched in 1995, when it said its mission is “to be Earth’s most customer-centric company, where customers can find and discover anything they might want to buy online, and endeavors to offer its customers the lowest possible prices.”

New Licenses

Two, Amazon may be planning to begin testing expanded PillPack services for employees. Currently, PillPack has licenses to ship to every customer in the US except Hawaii, but it only has 5 mail-order prescription facilities (compared to 26 for Caremark, 18 for Optum, and 15 for Express Scripts), per HealthData Management. If it’s going to expand to serve a Prime-sized audience, PillPack is going to need more facilities.

Which means it’s going to need more licenses for those facilities as well. PillPack has applied “for a string of new pharmacy licenses, primarily to ship drugs to customers from its Phoenix facility. The licenses in Washington, New Mexico and Indiana were spotted this week by analysts at financial services firm Jefferies,” per CNBC.

Because Amazon has tested other new products and services with employees, it’s possible the Washington license reveals an intent to have more capacity to test PillPack’s capabilities with a larger number of Amazon employees, which could be a prelude to subsequent larger expansions. Amazon said last week that it has 45,000 employees in Seattle. Adding new licenses to the Phoenix facility could increase PillPack’s potential Washington-serving capacity.

Increasing Capacity, Decreasing Delivery Times

Big picture, we would expect Amazon to invest in new facilities to accelerate PillPack’s capacity increase. In conjunction with expanded licensing, which we would expand PillPack to continue to seek on an ongoing basis, this should allow Amazon to increase its geographical reach and shorten delivery times for its pharmaceutical services. Amazon may be holding off on integrating PillPack with Prime until PillPack is ready (for “Prime” time).

There’s also the question of whether or how much Amazon might be able to integrate pharmacies into physical retail environments. Right now, Amazon is doing a number of small-format urban and suburban experiments, including Amazon Go, Amazon 4-star, and Amazon Books. The largest retail format Amazon owns is its network of 480 Whole Foods Market grocery stores. Unlike other grocery stores, Whole Foods don’t have in-store pharmacies. Amazon already uses Whole Foods stores somewhat like mini distribution centers for groceries. We could see a possible world where every major metro area has a PillPack warehouse.

Long Term Direction

Because a core use case for PillPack is better chronic disease management, rush delivery may not be as crucial for customers who take multiple medications on an ongoing basis. Rather, PillPack may just be a part of a suite of Amazon health care products and services.

In addition to prescription medications, Amazon could also offer insurance. Amazon has also begun the process of applying to sell health and life insurance in India. It is also rumored to be exploring the insurance markets in the USUK, and other countries as well. While Amazon does not offer consumer insurance directly as of now, it has consumer data that theoretically could help it to assess risk and lower fraud rates.

Amazon has also formed a much-publicized Boston-based health care “non-profit-seeking” joint venture with Berkshire Hathaway and JP Morgan and hired a CEO, surgeon and public health leader Atul Gawande. Gawande has yet to announce more details on the initiative’s direction or strategy, other than that he wants it to, “Take some of the middlemen out of the system.” It’s possible that this joint venture could play a direct role in health care provision.

Finally, Amazon also continues to build out its portfolio of private label and exclusive brand OTC products. Two weeks ago, Primary Health (Aurohealth) became the fourth Amazon Exclusive OTC medicines brand we have found, joining Basic Care (Perrigo), SoundHealth (Bestco), and Wellness Basics (PL Developments), in addition to a new Amazon Exclusive brand of home blood monitors called Choice that recently launched.

Jeff Bezos took a “build the primitives” approach to architecting AWS’s fundamental product strategy. Perhaps he might do the same in health care.

Aurohealth Launches Primary Health, An Amazon-Exclusive OTC Pharmaceuticals Brand

Aurohealth, a maker of generic store brand pharmaceuticals, has quietly launched a new Amazon Exclusive OTC pharmaceuticals brand called Primary Health, we have found. It’s the latest in a series of new health care brands to be created exclusively for Amazon as the company seeks to further expand its pharmaceutical efforts.

Aurohealth is a division of Hyderabad-based Aurobindo Pharma, which reported revenues of USD $2.6 billion last year.

Primary Health becomes the fourth Amazon Exclusive OTC medicines brand we have found, joining Basic Care (Perrigo), SoundHealth (Bestco), and Wellness Basics (PL Developments). Last week, a new Amazon Exclusive brand of home blood monitors called Choice launched. Just a few weeks ago, Amazon closed its acquisition of online pharmacy Pillpack, for which it said it paid $753 million net of cash. Amazon is also ramping up its B2B healthcare sales efforts, which it says is seeing “rocket ship” growth.

We are seeing 4 Primary Health products that have launched thus far:

  1. Primary Health Maximum Strength Mucus Relief DM (guaifenesin and dextromethorphan tablets, generic version of Maximum Strength Mucinex DM)
  2. Primary Health Mucus Relief DM (guaifenesin and dextromethorphan tablets, generic version of Mucinex DM)
  3. Primary Health Acid Reducer (esomeprazole magnesium capsules, generic version of Nexium 24 HR)
  4. Primary Health Acid Reducer (omeprazole magnesium tablets, generic version of Prilosec OTC)

These have all launched with Vine reviews rating the products 4 to 4.5 stars.

Given Amazon’s rapidly expanding healthcare efforts, there is much speculation about where the company might go next.

Amazon has formed a Boston-based health care “non-profit-seeking” joint venture with Berkshire Hathaway and JP Morgan and hired a CEO, surgeon and public health leader Atul Gawande. Gawande has yet to announce more details on the initiative’s direction or strategy, other than that he wants it to, “Take some of the middlemen out of the system.”

Amazon is in the process of rolling out Amazon Go automated grocery and convenience stores in urban areas. Were Amazon to start using those stores to distribute pharmaceutical products, it could affect current leading retail pharmacies like CVS, Walgreens, Walmart, grocery pharmacies, and others. (Aurohealth also appears to make products for CVS, as some CVS brand products share customer service phone numbers with Primary Health brand products.)

Amazon has also begun the process of applying to sell health and life insurance in India. It is also rumored to be exploring the insurance markets in the USUK, and other countries as well. While Amazon does not offer consumer insurance directly as of now, it has consumer data that could theoretically help it to assess risk and lower fraud rates.

As for Primary Health, we would generally expect Aurohealth and Amazon to roll out additional products over the coming weeks and months. We have reached out to Aurohealth for comment about the company’s plans for its Primary Health brand and will update this if we receive a response. Aurohealth shares an address with AuroMedics Pharma, which is listed as the owner of the Primary Health trademark filing.

Like other Amazon Exclusive brands, Primary Health products are now being promoted in Amazon search results as “Top Rated from Our Brands”. As part of its Amazon Accelerator program to grow its portfolio of private brands, Amazon is offering marketing services like these promotional placements to help give Amazon Exclusive brands a boost. Amazon Exclusive brands “receive a suite of marketing support executed by our Amazon merchandising team. Products with high ratings and reviews can receive additional placements across Amazon.com,” Amazon says.