An $18.4 million funding round is the prescription Rx Savings Solutions needs to expand its fight against a crippling, yet common ailment, said Michael Rea.
“Everyone in the nation has the same problem — high drug costs — and most people don’t know there are options to save money,” said Rea, founder and chief executive officer of Rx Savings.
The Overland Park-based company secured the new funding in a round led by the Omaha private equity firm McCarthy Capital. The new capital will be put toward sales, marketing, and investment in additional software functionality to make cumbersome processes throughout the pharmacy paradigm easier for consumers to navigate, Rx Savings said in a press release.
“This new strategic capital gives us the resources needed to continue to build an organization that combines premier pharmacy expertise with leading technology expertise,” Rea said. “The result is a powerful, proactive software approach that is one of a kind.”
In addition, Brian Zaversnik, vice president of McCarthy Capital, will join the Rx Savings Board of Directors, actively working alongside Rea and local investor Dan Henry, the company said.
“The sophistication of [Rx Savings’] software and the corresponding savings for clients are clear differentiators,” Zaversnik said. “They are bringing pharmacy and technology together in a way that will transform the industry and bring significant efficiency to the market.”
Rx Savings’ membership has soared in the past two years, climbing from 100,000 members in 2015 to what will be 2 million lives served by January 1, 2018, the company said.
Marquee clients include Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City, the State of Kansas Employee Health Plan, Quest Diagnostics, Berkshire Hathaway Media Group, Teachers Health Trust, West Virginia Public Employees Insurance Agency and American Century Investments.
“We are using the power of technology to streamline how Americans purchase prescription drugs in the same ways the internet has transformed how consumers book travel, buy cars, or shop for electronics,” Rea said, “Like a shopping app, we do the price checking for you and proactively alert you of the savings directly.”
A pharmacist himself, Rea founded Rx Savings after learning that 30 percent of prescriptions that are written are never filled because of high drug costs. He told a crowd at the 2016 TEDxKC event that the price of pharmaceutical drugs was rising four times faster than U.S. wages, and that prices have far more to do with luck than economic status.
“With access to the right information at the right time, our health care system could be simpler, cheaper, and more effective. It should be, it needs to be, and I’m gonna stay mad that it’s not until it is,” Rea said at TEDxKC.