A MARKETABLE OFFENSE

Colombia 2018 | HEALTH & EDUCATION | INTERVIEW

TBY talks to Juan Carlos Echandía Bautista,Infrastructure President of Clínicas Colsanitas, and Ignacio Correa Sebastián, Executive President of Colsanitas.

Juan Carlos Echandía Bautista Ignacio Correa Sebastián

How do you assess your current situation?

JUAN CARLOS ECHANDíA BAUTISTA From a growth perspective, there has been a great deal of work and excellence provided in terms of caring for our users that has contributed to significant growth in our medical centers and hospitals, as well as our general operations. We are optimistic in undertaking our 2018-2020 strategic plan. And we are pleased to see our accomplishments and see how we have excelled due to the hard work of our team of professionals. Political uncertainty regarding the upcoming presidential election and the country's economical results are a major concern, of course, as they may directly impact the health sector.

IGNACIO CORREA SEBASTIÁN Our recent evolution has been positive, as we started a strategic plan two years ago and have accomplished the figures and indicators for 2016 and 2017. Projects have been moving smoothly, and people are very positive about developments slated to occur between 2018 and 2020. Our Health Promotion Agency (HPA) offers the best health quality, and we are always at the top of the rankings. In addition, we are not the only ones to provide prepaid medicine in the market, even when it is small; HPA always provides the best customer service for our patients. There are prepaid medicine products that are cheaper than ours, but it is not only about the price—it is also about customer satisfaction. A report in 2016 said that 34% of prepaid medicine customers are Colsanitas, followed by Comeva, Colmedica, and SURA Insurance.

What are some of your strategies for expansion?

JCEB We have changed the brand of our holding company, Organizacion Sanitas International, since in recent years we have invested in different countries, initially in South America but also in the US, Mexico, and Asia. Since we wanted a global brand that could be used globally, without restrictions, after a decision-making process of over a year we decided on the brand Keralty. Keralty is made-up by the word KARE (care), which represents care, health, and wellbeing, and by ALT for altitude, excellence, and high quality standards. Colsanitas, which has been operating for more than 40 years in Colombia, will remain the same. Throughout our portfolio, Colombia represents around 70% of total operations. That said, there has been significant growth driven by the US, and Mexico will play an important role in the coming years. We also expect improvements in terms of global participation from other countries we operate in, such as Brazil and Peru. Our objective is to be in 12 countries in the next few years, all the while expanding our growth within individual US states.

ICS Our business is doing well and creates many benefits for our customers, bringing many of them measurable health breakthroughs. We have a portfolio crossing that we applied to the dentistry industry through a prepaid program that has thus far had about 50,000 consumers and been a huge success, even becoming our leading market program. Regarding prepaid service coverage, customers have a sophisticated service in the laboratory, consultations, diagnostics, ultrasounds, and elsewhere. However, in terms of the coverage, the regulations can often be difficult, especially when there is a new change in the system. Altogether the legal regulations have become more demanding for coverage. We are also investing large sums of money into our virtual payment system and changing the insurance business in terms of DTS and prepaid. Both options have a similar functionality when customers use the service. We are competing within channels that have no presence with users, such as apps, website, and online offices. On our app, users have the option to see their medical directory and then make their appointments online, looking at doctors' information. In 2018, we want to have an integrated system that includes apps, online offices, and a website, giving customers maximum choice.