Dear Healthcare Professional,

I would like to thank you for considering Virtumed. I and my team appreciate the time you have so generously allowed us, as we recognise that time is perhaps the most constrained and thereby precious of resources. At Virtumed we do not believe in ‘selling’ products, as abnormal as that may sound, especially for a company whose sole source of income is derived from selling products to not be focused on sales. This might sound counter intuitive but we are cognisant that you are bombarded by salespeople from morning to night, with shiny, flashy presentations, espousing the ‘benefits’ of product X over Y, bolstered by any  promises necessary to secure a deal. We know that industry has built up a reputation of using proprietary terms, jargon, curated datasets from imperfect research, and nasty competitor comparison, all in the name of the sale. We believe that in our industry these practices are grossly crass and that that this behaviour does not align to our beliefs. Therefore, our interactions are carefully considered with the intent to change the way product distributors interact within the interventional eco-system. We know our approach is different, and we are proud of it.

First things first, most of our competitor products are great, any product which has CE or FDA approval has been evaluated, compared, and measured to ensure a great user experience and most importantly a superior patient outcome. We recognise that a perfect product might not exist – often a gain in one characteristic comes in the form of cost to another characteristic. Each patient is unique, as is each approach to treatment. The best patient outcomes are a result of skilled experienced operators, with the support of great products that best suits the need of the case.

I am sure you are questioning whether this approach is not just marketing mambo jambo, surely sales are important to a company with financial obligations? Naturally, income is a requirement for a company to be sustainable, and we are not shy to admit that we exist to deliver shareholder value, sustainably and indefinitely. However, we believe in journeys, and walking the road with you, forcing a one-off sale today cannot be what it is all about. Instead we focus on what you want from your career and look for any small ways in which we can work with you to achieve your desired goals. For instance, some of your colleagues are interested in building referral bases, and we believe the best way to advance this is through attending sessions abroad, hosting visiting proctors, having them serve as proctors, as well as digital marketing of their skills to a global audience, all of 3which are values, skills and capabilities we have and continuously expand and align our approach to market upon. This collaboration is intended to ensure the best patient outcomes and it is in walking with you and in a small way being a part of building your capabilities that the industry will be stronger, patient outcomes optimised and hopefully the by-product of this journey is the sale of our products.

Likewise, we would like to invite you on our journey too. I pride myself in being available to you the doctors, I do listen carefully to any advice given, and I believe what sets me apart is that I do take the advice onboard and you will see changes and improvements thereon.

This segues nicely into something that is also very important to me. I am available, at all hours. I am present. I am a South African, who is proud of being South African, I do my best to align my goals to that of the country’s best interests. I pay my taxes here, and so does the company. We do not hide profits through transfer pricing to offshore bank accounts, the value generated is spent here and contributes to our economy. The decision maker and the decision making is done here, fully cognisant of the South African context. I feel that this is important and believe that you in your role you should not have to deal with company bureaucracy and a foreign figurehead who doesn’t understand our market or our environment, where the only communications is where you are spoken to, rather than spoken with.

It would be remiss not to talk about the products, but as someone who is not a healthcare professional, I will never know the pressure of having a patient’s life in my hands, and thus any opinion I may have on a particular products characteristics is meaningless. The best way for a product to shine is for it to sell itself in the hands of an expert facing a challenging case. Therefore, I would encourage you to try a product, either independently or arrange for a workshop with one of our proctors. Speak to other users and get their opinion, and most importantly after usage please share your honest, direct feedback, it is more valuable than you could imagine. I do listen, your feedback aids in my future partner and product selection through continuously evolving product and manufacturer selection criterion.

We look forward to the opportunity to walk with you on your journey and hope that you will be a part of our journey too. I am personally available to confidentially discuss your vision and to uncover ways in which we can in a small way enable this vision.

Yours faithfully

Simon Swanich

Chief Executive