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ScriptCo Co-founder Zach Zeller on Affordable Medicine

Introduction

It’s no big secret that Americans pay a lot for healthcare. And this isn’t limited to doctor visits, hospital stays, or operations. Many people who need prescription medications are often stuck paying high markups, even if their medications are generic. 

That’s where ScriptCo comes in. The startup is aiming to lower its members’ medication costs by offering prescriptions at wholesale prices. We spoke with co-founder and President Zach Zeller about his mission and goals for ScriptCo.

Note: This interview was conducted over phone and email. It has been lightly edited for clarity and length.

Yasmin Sharbaf

In your own words, how would you describe ScriptCo?

Zach Zeller

ScriptCo, to our knowledge, is the first and only pharmacy in America selling medications at ZERO markup. Our only margin comes from memberships, not medications. This five minute video does a great job of explaining what we are doing and how it helps everyone:  https://youtu.be/w5_UeahsJq0.

Yasmin Sharbaf

What inspired you to take the leap and start this company?

Zach Zeller

After years of owning and operating traditional insurance and retail-based pharmacies, my co-founder Mark McCormick and I saw a much better way to offer people access to the lifesaving medications they need, without any of the shenanigans that happen in the insurance ecosystem. When it comes to generic medications — which account for nine out of 10 of the medications dispensed in America — you do not need insurance, you need transparency. We found that almost 80% of the time insurance co-pays exceeded the actual cost of the medication.

Yasmin Sharbaf

Who is on your team and how did you come together?

Zach Zeller

Mark and I met in the operating room where we were both selling implants to orthopedic surgeons. We left the operating room at the same time and got into the pharmacy space. This ultimately led to us owning and operating traditional retail-based pharmacies, which then led us to a better way for pharmacy, ScriptCo! Along the way, we met Sam Gupta. Sam has been a registered pharmacist in Texas since 2004. He is an infusion, accreditation, and compliance specialist. He has a master’s degree in pharmacy administration and outcomes research. Sam was one of the “40 Pharmacists under 40 in Texas” recognized by the Texas Pharmacy Association for his contributions to HIV research and community practice at their 2005 annual meeting. Sam has founded or acquired several companies over the last decade and made several successful exits. He currently consults with several nationally and internationally recognized companies in matters specifically dealing with strategic acquisitions, compliance, and healthcare.

Yasmin Sharbaf

How is ScriptCo transforming the pharmacy industry?

Zach Zeller

We offer every medication in existence at cost (ZERO markup), with the exception of controlled substances. There are “competitors” to us, but they lack access to medications or have a challenging user experience or both. If you have time, go read our Google reviews as we cannot take down anything that is a poor user experience. 

Yasmin Sharbaf

What does the competitive landscape look like, and how do you differentiate?

Zach Zeller

GoodRx is the leader in the cash pay pharmacy space. It has done an incredible job of shedding light on the nonsense that is prescription medications. We felt there was still a lot of room to offer savings and a better user experience. The other new option is a website called Cost Plus Drug Company that offers access to medications through a pharmacy called True Pill. Cost Plus Drug Company has a limited formulary and does not have an incredible user experience since it farms out customer service as well as all medication fulfillment to True Pill.

Yasmin Sharbaf

Who is your target customer? And do you plan to expand internationally?

Zach Zeller

In the direct consumer space, our target customer is anyone who is on three or more maintenance meds. There are 79 million Americans who fit this user profile. Above and beyond that, we know our big step growth changes will be coming from our business-to-business (B2B) launch. ScriptCo will be able to save self-funded employer plans, associations, and groups hundreds or thousands of dollars individually around access to their prescription medications. Our B2B portal is 70% completed and will allow any “plan sponsor” to enroll any number of lives in real time into ScriptCo. In doing so, we will be able to continue our impeccable user experience throughout the process of onboarding, all while saving businesses and individuals money on their prescription drug spend.

Yasmin Sharbaf

Can you tell us more about ScriptCo’s B2B channel?

Zach Zeller

Currently, 64% of employees across America get access to healthcare via self-funded employer plans. We feel that we can make a significant impact in savings and user experience specifically for self-funded employer plans.

Yasmin Sharbaf

How do you intend to use the money you raise this round to scale the business?

Zach Zeller

We will be deploying capital from this round to drive B2B growth through some strategic hires and marketing, to let self-funded employer plans know that ScriptCo exists and is a very timely alternative to the traditional insurance ecosystem.

Yasmin Sharbaf

What do you want potential investors to know about you and/or your company?

Zach Zeller

We have built a solution that is scalable and genuinely helps people. We are in a position to grow up to 200,000 lives on the ScriptCo platform in our current facility without changing anything other than hiring additional team members to service the volume. All infrastructure is in place and ready to go. Beyond that, our estimation of the size of the marketplace we can impact is more than 55 million lives.

Yasmin Sharbaf

As you think about the business 5-10 years down the road, what do you see exit opportunities looking like? Have you set any future goals for the company?

Zach Zeller

We have a goal of one million active lives as members at ScriptCo by the end of 2026. We feel at that point ScriptCo would have a considerable market presence and value that can lend itself to a very meaningful exit for all investors.

We look forward to seeing where Zach and his team take the company. ScriptCo is currently raising capital on StartEngine.

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About: Yasmin Sharbaf

Yasmin is passionate about the intersection of business, art, and science. Prior to KingsCrowd, Yasmin worked on a cryptocurrency investing research project for Wellesley College Investment Office where she assessed the risks and rewards for university endowment investment into cryptocurrency. She has also previously worked in a neuroscience lab studying language and memory of songbirds. Yasmin’s dream is to make investing and financial education accessible to everyone. In her free time, Yasmin enjoys going on adventures, learning new languages, and exploring different cultures. Yasmin studied Neuroscience and Studio Art at Wellesley College.

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