111 Inc.: Envisioning the Future of Healthcare
Founded in 2010, 111 Inc. was a leading online, direct-sales pharmacy in China. As an early entrant to China's online health care market, 111 Inc. developed various operational capabilities to support and expand its businesses, including a smart supply chain, big-data technologies, omnichannel capabilities, and operation on both business-to-consumer and business-to-business models. The online health care market in China had been growing rapidly in recent years, especially with the support of new government policies. Therefore, many companies were showing great interest in the industry's new opportunities, including Alibaba Group Holding Limited, JD.com Inc., Pingduoduo Inc., and Tencent Holdings Ltd. Considering the imminent market entry of these technology giants, with their vast customer bases and extensive amounts of capital, 111 Inc. was wondering what it should do to sustain and grow its competitive advantage. Ruomeng Cui is affiliated with Emory University. Jian Bin Li is affiliated with Huazhong University of Science and Technology. Xiaomeng Luo is affiliated with Southwestern University of Finance and Economics.