PillPack
Image: © Airman st Class Zachary Hada

Amazon has bought PillPack – and people don’t think they’ll stop there

The next frontier for the company that already sells basically everything? Healthcare.

Books, clothes, groceries, voice-controlled devices, streaming services… what are they missing? Ah, yes - healthcare.

What it means: Amazon has acquired PillPack, a mail-order pharmacy that delivers pre-sorted packets of prescriptions drugs to people’s homes, for a billion dollars. The company automates a lot of pharmacists would usually do: checking when refills are due, confirming insurance, etc.

It’s particularly upsetting news for Walmart, who were PillPack’s second highest bidder at $700 million. News of Amazon winning the deal meant a bunch of people pulled their money out of Walmart, sending the company's share price down by $1.03 per share… which doesn’t sound like much, but given there are three billion shares of Walmart out there, not investing another $300 million into their offer for PillPack ended up costing the company 3 billion dollars in other people's investments. Talk about (non-)buyer’s remorse.

The CEO hasn’t said yet whether he wants to make this new healthcare hobby an international thing, or what his next investment might be - though we do already know he’s partnered up with two other major companies to provide healthcare for employees in the US.

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Reader Comments

  • RW

    Your right to a degree. You mentioned “the wandering Jew”.

    I elaborate that the Jewish people, historically have tended to migrate almost exclusively to locations that are economically and culturally vibrant already. I would speculate that Jews have thrived in these places and have often improved the bounds of their economies and knowledge base.

    You can also ask; how many massive entertainment conglomerates, Nobel winners or billionaires has Isreal developed? If Jews are so capable, why isn’t Tel Aviv the Rome of our time?

    Jews are successful because they value education, maintain a strong social cohesive, they actively monitor and have a good sense for Zeitgeist wherever they are and they carefully choose the places they settle and congregate themselves heavily in these choice locations.

    But most importantly (haulocaust increased the importance of this aspect), they actually designed their culture for success. They not only attend Harvard, they use what they learned to better the group as a whole. With as much, they studied intricate networking systems, adapted to it and in many cases improved upon them. (See how Japan acquired Aegis warships and made them better).

    Of course there is nothing wrong with any of this. It’s when you elaborately gain disproportionate power in any society where you would stand out, you must take care when attempting to make a society better (Civil Rights movement) and rewriting that society all together (mass immigration). Ask blacks in China, Mexico, Philippines or India how much opportunity they have? Go to businesses owned by their American diaspora and see how many blacks they hire. Go to Silicon Valley and see how many East or South Asian tech workers wish they could work with more black people. California might work as a state, but as a nation, I think your rolling the nuclear dice here. I hope we can succeed as a tolerant pluralistic superpower but at this stage in human societal development, it’s a pipe dream.

    And if Jews really are the icon for success, they would see that fundamental human successes happen over generations. Just look at the rest of the planet? Are we ready?