There are many benefits to buying a pharmacy that is already up and running. Many of these advantages are similar to businesses in general. Things such as no start-up costs and a customer base that has already been established. But there are things to be aware of when buying a business, especially a pharmacy. The following are four things you need to pay attention to.
Will you be able to keep the current license?
One great advantage of buying an existing pharmacy is that the business may already have an existing license. This cuts down on the time it takes to get your operation up and running. The exact licensing requirements, as well as the ability to use the preexisting license, are dependent upon the particular laws of the state you will be conducting business in.
Do you want to keep the current staff?
If you plan to operate the business as the chief pharmacist and are buying from a sole proprietor, you may simply be replacing the previous pharmacist for the day-to-day running of the business. However, the supporting staff that is already in place may need to be replaced. If you plan on keeping some or all of the existing workers, you will need to communicate this to the staff before the purchase is made. The last thing you need is to take over a pharmacy and not have any help. As you well know, hiring pharmacy staff takes more time that a common position in a retail store.
Make sure you understand the current lease
Some of the most successful pharmacies are those that have been at the same location for many years. Customers get used to having their prescriptions filled at the same location. Doctors usually have their patients set up in a computer system where prescriptions can be sent by Internet to the pharmacies. In short, a disruption in your new pharmacy business due to an expired lease can cause inconvenience to customers and even a loss of business.
Make sure you understand the paperwork needed for a pharmacy
Unlike many other businesses that are for sale, a pharmacy will require specific paperwork to be filed with the proper agencies, and some of these forms will need to be done before the purchase of the business is completed. Most states will require a change of ownership form be filed. In addition, you will need to file one or more forms with Medicare. This will also need to be done ahead of your first day of operation.
Naturally, you will want the advice of an attorney with experience in the acquisition of a pharmacy. And above all, you need patience. Acquiring a pharmacy usually takes more time than buying other types of businesses.