MANILA - Logistics firm Fast Group said it will be part of the COVID-19 vaccine distribution program of the government and the private sector next year as it wields its expertise in handling healthcare supply chains in the fight against the pandemic.
“We will definitely be in the supply chain for vaccines,” said William Chiongbian, Group President and CEO of Fast Group.
Chiongbian said the company is in talks with “vaccine czar” Secretary Carlito Galvez, and Presidential Adviser on Entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion, who is leading private sector efforts to secure supplies of COVID-19 vaccines.
“Medicines really really need to be within certain stable bands of temperature, and we have substantially helped a number of our clients create this type of supply chain,” Chiongbian said during an online forum.
The Fast Group official however admitted that distributing millions of vaccines across the country will be challenging.
“The (supply) chain is not new to us. The scale is new. But having said that, these types of challenges excite us,” Chiongbian added.
Fast Group also announced that private equity firm CVC Capital is investing up to P6 billion in the logistics firm for a 40 percent stake.
The company said that despite the disruptions caused by the pandemic, Fast Group is optimistic for the growth of the industry in the coming year as its main clients which are in the food, health and wellness industries have not been as affected by the pandemic’s disruptions.
Bonifacio Doroy, Fast Group Director, noted that the company was able to buck the effects of the pandemic this year.
“We still managed to grow this year by about 12 percent,” Doroy said.
CVC meanwhile said its P6 billion investment in Fast Group “is all primary capital.”
“So all that money will be used for growing the business,” said CVC Capital managing director Brice Cu.
Doroy said CVC’s investment will used to expand the logistics firm’s dry and cold facilities, the digitalization of their processes, and also look for potential acquisitions.