Year in Review: Distributors and Manufacturers


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MWI acquires NEVSCO
In December 2017, MWI Animal Health, a part of AmerisourceBergen, announced the acquisition of Northeast Veterinary Supply Co. (NEVSCO), an independent, regional distributor of veterinary pharmaceuticals and medical supplies servicing primarily the northeast region of the U.S. “The acquisition of NEVSCO continues to strengthen MWI’s position to better support the viability of independent veterinary practices and provide even greater value and care to current and future animal health customers,” the company said in a release. It is a significant commitment to the northeast region of the United States, with MWI adding NEVSCO’s 40+ associates and leaders to its organization.

“We believe our investment in NEVSCO is a demonstration of our continued commitment to community-based care and growing independent veterinary practices,” said Mark Shaw, President of MWI Animal Health. “We’re really excited about being able to support and enhance NEVSCO’s high-touch consultative service model. The timing was good for both of our companies and we think it’s a very strategic fit.”

Henry Schein announces spinoff of animal health business
In what Henry Schein Chairman and CEO Stanley M. Bergman called “a prime opportunity to better serve veterinarians and to improve their business,” the global distributor announced in April 2018 plans to spin off its animal health business, which will merge with Vets First Choice to form an independent public company.

The new company, to be called Vets First Corp., will harness insights and analytics to provide pro-active prescription management, and combined with Henry Schein’s global animal health solutions, will create a unique animal health service and technology platform dedicated to supporting the veterinary market, the companies said in the announcement.

“We are early in the lifecycle of rapid technological change in the animal health market. This merger creates an enhanced value chain that connects the veterinarian, the manufacturer, and the pet owner through insights and analytics that will support better clinical and financial outcomes,” said Ben Shaw, Founder and CEO of Vets First Choice, who will become CEO of the new company. “This new global animal health care company is focused on improving clinical compliance by facilitating the delivery of care how, when, and where the pet owner wants it.”

Bergman commented: “One of the largest motivating factors behind this merger was both companies’ desire to better serve pets and their owners, and we believe that bringing together the power of data analytics, digital communications, practice management software, and supply chain expertise into one combined company, Vets First Corp. is better positioned to help improve health outcomes for the benefit of pets and pet parents while also helping veterinarians build more efficient and successful practices.”

Zoetis acquires Abaxis
This summer, Zoetis Inc. announced the completion of the acquisition of Abaxis for US $83 per share in cash, or approximately $2.0 billion in aggregate, according to a release. “Abaxis, with its VetScan® family of diagnostic instruments, brings Zoetis experienced colleagues and a proven, competitive platform for growth in diagnostics. By leveraging our global scale and direct customer relationships in approximately 45 countries, we can help Abaxis accelerate that growth in the U.S. and worldwide,” said Juan Ramón Alaix, Chief Executive Officer of Zoetis. “Together, we can bring more veterinarian customers comprehensive solutions to predict, prevent, detect and treat disease in animals.”