Interview with Dominik Saner, owner of the Saner pharmacy in Switzerland

The Saner pharmacy runs five locations in Switzerland. Do you have a parent company to control your business?

No, the five pharmacies work very independently from one another, each with a managing director and a management team with supervisors for different tasks. In addition, we have a back office headed by my son Florian Staub, he is an expert in business processes that effect the entire organisation, such as human resources for example. As far as purchasing is concerned, we are currently
reviewing whether it makes sense to purchase certain products for the entire organisation centrally. In general, it is the task of the person responsible within the pharmacy’s management team to decide which products they want to offer customers.

“Our entrepreneurial concept is based on the idea of turning our pharmacies into a place for encounter. Automation provides unique parameters for this concept by ensuring background processes run smoothly.”

Dominik Saner

Did Apostore‘s SME background play a role in your decision?

That too, but I am much more taken by the passion for engineering the Apostore team showed and their attention to detail. Standard solutions just don‘t exist. The team worked with every detail in every respect. It took floor plans and spatial conditions of our pharmacies into account. In one case it even succeeded in installing lifts at different heights and in positioning the dispenser in two different directions. It doesn‘t get much better than that.

Which Apostore picking systems do you have?

Our cooperation started in mid-2018. At that time, we had the Apostore A1000 installed in our Liestal pharmacy. Since then we have also equipped the pharmacies in Greifengasse, Basel, as well as Olten with machines. The first was an A2000, the second an A1000 again.

One thing has become clear to me now: I‘m sticking with Apostore! Processes have become more efficient and the income from operations
is impressive.

Do you store your own natural products in the Apostore machines too?

We store everything that can be stored, our own products, too, of course. The benefits are tremendous. Our employees spend significantly less time with logistics activities such as warehouse maintenance or inventory. Instead, we now have much more time for our customers and for consultations.

Why is that so important to you?

Our business concept is based on the idea of turning our pharmacies into a meeting-place. Automation creates unique parameters for this concept by ensuring background processes run smoothly. This means teams can use their time to build a rapport with customers, perhaps people who come to us for information about natural medicines for example. These conversations foster close relationships, something which of course boosts our profits in the long run.

What is your experience of Apostore so far?

At the beginning, it was a bit bumpy. That was due to the fact that Apostore was completely new to the Swiss market in 2018. Now everything is working well and running perfectly. We now have personal contact persons here in Switzerland, including service technicians. In short, we feel well looked after and the service level is excellent. It couldn’t be better.