McKesson New Zealand, formerly Emendo, a healthcare services and IT company, has plans to add to its staff strength this year, and bring on partners, as it readies for growth.
“Our plan this year is to add more functions in the R&D side of things but also into the sales, marketing and infrastructure side of things. We will probably grow another 10 this year. We have talked about doing more in Australia because we are very light in Australia at the moment, but we will work through another year where we can support Australia from here at the moment,” says Dave Tinkler, VP at McKesson NZ.
The Christchurch firm currently has 35 staff in its NZ offices, and around four people to cover the Australian region.
The company, which has gone direct to customers in the past, will also look to add partners as part of its go-to-market strategy in the near future.
“McKesson is a direct organisation in the US and they are big enough to do that. Over here we are close to finalising a couple of deals by which we will go into a much more of a partnership approach in NZ and Australia. That’s because despite being a part of a bigger organisation we are still a relatively small organisation over here. So we either decide to grow it massively here or we go through the right channels to market. And I have always like channels to market,” says Tinkler.
“There are two organisations with whom the conversation is most progressed. One would be with a partner that has other products. We will co-market and sell each other’s products. The other one that is close to fruition is a consulting firm that focuses on hospital optimisation. We are looking to tap into private hospitals, particularly in Australia, with them,” he adds.
According to him, with all partnership agreements the company will look to tap into firms that have cross-Tasman presence to enable work across both New Zealand and Australia.
McKesson entered the New Zealand market with the acquisition of Emendo in November 2012. The main drive for the acquisition was Emendo’s CapPlan predictive capacity planning solution, which fit a niche in McKesson’s portfolio of products for the healthcare industry.
“They didn’t buy us to invest into here. They bought us to sell our product into the US. However, since then they have put money in here and grown the team here. They have grown the local presence, but equally they have put on a team in the US who we link into over there. And they have taken our product to the US. They have done more in less than two years, than we could have hoped to achieve in 20 years,” says Tinkler.
According to Tinkler, Emendo was looking to enter the US market, and the acquisition happened as a result of the firm looking for potential minority stakeholders in the country during the move. With the acquisition, along with capital, the firm is able to tap into and offer other products from McKesson’s global stable.
“We have added workforce management capabilities and have added quite a few clients in that area. We are growing in that area. The products have some tight and loose interfaces. You can unbolt them but you can also make them work together as well.
“We are bringing in a visibility product, which is a patient flow product, and we are looking at some others that I can’t really announce at the moment.
“We are a dual personality here in many ways. We are still the key builders of the capacity planner product and enhancing that. But we also go into areas where they are aggregating more products so the bits are seamless. We are taking on some key roles around the information layer architectures and contributing our expertise into those areas,” says Tinkler.
The company, which has traditionally had a large number of public healthcare institutions as clients, including a number of district health boards (DHBs) in NZ, has seen the private sector grow as a client base, especially with the workforce management tool.
While it does not have a full SaaS offering yet, Tinkler states that the company will look at it eventually, and respond to customer requirements. However, he states that these decisions would most likely come from the headquarters.
“In the end we are an engine house for the guys in the United States,” he concludes.