Tech services firms expect fresh business opportunities from coronavirus vaccine distribution

BENGALURU: IT services providers and business process management (BPM) firms expect new business opportunities as pharmaceutical companies and governments across the world chalk out their Covid-19 vaccine distribution plans.

Infosys, Genpact, Accenture, HCL Tech, Tata Consultancy Services, and others are likely to see increased demand for data analytics-based solutions as governments and companies need to track vaccine distribution and its side-effects.

Genpact is already working with the UK Government on reporting adverse vaccine reactions, while Infosys – the second largest Indian IT services exporter — last month announced a Salesforce-based vaccine management system solution through subsidiary Simplus.

“The bigger role people like us can play is once the government decides which population should get the first, second and third preference. Then making sure the supply chain works, the logistics need to be worked out. Vaccines have to be tracked by lot, batch because you want to find the reaction to the vaccine by batch and lot…creating the database for that and doing analytics,” Tiger Tyagarajan, President and chief executive officer, Genpact. “It is going to be an end-to-end process.”

Genpact is in talks with clients in “various jurisdictions to actually start thinking about the best way to do this and what types of technology solutions are needed,” he added.

In October, Accenture announced a comprehensive vaccine management solution for government and healthcare organizations to effectively plan and develop COVID-19 vaccination programmes.

Supply and temperature management are going to be two major areas creating demand for technology services companies.

Analysts said IT services companies would try to win projects in the business areas of pharma companies through vaccine distribution deals rather than just software services deals, and it may vary between $ 40 million and $ 50 million in value.

Infosys said its vaccine management solution, built on the Salesforce platform, would cover a broad spectrum of vaccine management, including campaign management, citizen registration, prioritization, provider enrolment, supply chain visibility, forecasting, vaccine administration, wellness surveys, and adverse event monitoring.

Infosys’ solution is integrated with Salesforce Health Cloud that can help support compliance with applicable laws, such as HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) in the US.

“I think the firms with established analytics and BPO operations are best positioned to win these deals. Sizes of these deals are likely to be large but not huge. I would judge that they may reach $ 40-$ 50 million,” said Peter Bendor-Samuel, chief executive of IT research and advisory firm Everest Group.

The vaccine distribution process could be a small opportunity but would open up new areas of business for the IT-BPM sector, said Pareekh Jain, founder of Pareekh Consulting.

“I do not think it is a big business opportunity, but it gives them a good foothold in the pharma core business areas. Companies that are focused and have a proven track record in the pharma sectors can also compete with the incumbent technology services companies,” said Jain.

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Tech-Economic Times

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