AmerisourceBergen is the source for many of North America's pharmacies and health care providers. The distribution company serves as a go-between for drug makers and the pharmacies, doctors' offices, hospitals, and other health care providers that dispense drugs. Operating primarily in the US and Canada, it distributes generic, branded, and over-the-counter pharmaceuticals, as well as some medical supplies and other products, using its network of more than two dozen facilities. Its specialty distribution unit focuses on sensitive and complex biopharmaceuticals. Other operations include pharmaceutical packaging. AmerisourceBergen also provides commercialization and consulting services to its customers.
The company operates through an alphabet soup of segments including AmerisourceBergen Drug Corporation (ABDC), AmerisourceBergen Specialty Group (ABSG), and AmerisourceBergen Consulting Services (ABCS). Its AmerisourceBergen Packaging Group (ABPG) was taken apart in 2012 and its American Health Packaging, Anderson, and Brecon businesses were moved into other segments.
Its primary distribution business, ABDC, offers a full range of generic and brand-name pharmaceuticals, over-the-counter products, and home health care supplies and equipment. Its customers include hospitals and health systems, retail and mail order pharmacies, clinics and long-term care facilities throughout North America. Meanwhile, ABSG delivers specialty drugs for particular diseases (especially cancer) directly to the doctors who administer them. It also distributes plasma and other delicate biopharmaceutical products. Launches of specialty generics have spurred much of the company's recent growth.
The company's consulting services business supports customers with services ranging from research, field staffing, co-pay assistance programs, and risk mitigation services. ABCS also helps retailers and manufacturers coordinate marketing programs to successfully launch new biotech drugs.
Acquisitions have helped AmerisourceBergen expand its reach to new customer segments and geographic markets. Its Canadian presence has grown through acquisitions to make it that country's second-largest drug distributor. In 2012 the company acquired World Courier, a specialty transportation and logistics provider. The $520 million purchase allows AmerisourceBergen to expand its specialty drug distribution services outside of North America.
In late 2011 the company paid $250 million to acquire TheraCom from CVS Caremark. The business brought in additional commercialization and reimbursement support activities to fatten up ABCS' consulting services.
Loss of key customers through industry consolidation has hampered some of the company's growth. In 2010 it lost a contract to provide third party logistics to one customer, and in 2011 its biggest customer, Medco Health Solutions announced it would merge with Express Scripts, which does business with one of AmerisourceBergen's competitors.