FFF Enterprises named a preferred Consorta vendor

July 3, 2002 Media Release

Biopharmaceuticals distribution leader FFF Enterprises, representing the American Red Cross, is named a preferred vendor of human plasma products for group purchasing organization Consorta

TEMECULA, Calif. - FFF Enterprises announced today that it has been selected as a preferred vendor for several human plasma products by Consorta Inc., a leading healthcare resource management and group purchasing organization (GPO) that represents over 400 U.S. acute care facilities and more than 1,700 non-acute care sites.

FFF Enterprises is a specialist in the management and distribution of biopharmaceuticals, headquartered in Temecula, Calif. Representing the American Red Cross to Consorta members, an unusual role for a distributor, FFF is one of four blood products manufacturers selected by the GPO to supply human serum albumin, intravenous immune globulin (IVIG), and tetanus and diphtheria vaccines. FFF's three-year agreement with Consorta is effective July 1. The other vendors named are Alpha Therapeutic, Aventis Behring and Baxter BioScience.

Consorta's projected annual volumes of 400,000 units of albumin and 500,000 grams of IVIG, represent valuable growth for FFF Enterprises, according to the company's president and CEO Patrick M. Schmidt.

"Being selected by Consorta as one of their preferred suppliers is an honor for FFF," Schmidt said. "Consorta has expressed its confidence in FFF as a unique player in the industry, and it's a role we are pleased to accept. Just as valuable as the expansion of our services to GPOs, however, is our relationship with Consorta, a truly worthy GPO. It is clear that Consorta shares our corporate vision of 'Helping Healthcare Care.'

"Consorta's 13 shareholder organizations and systems represent over 2,150 member facilities nationwide. Consorta Contract Manager Charles Sbarbaro said, "Our participants expect excellent discounts and service from the GPO and its vendors.

"While the role that FFF has in Consorta’s Plasma Program is nontraditional," Sbarbaro continued, "our contracting process recognized that FFF could play a significant part. Consorta is always looking for unique solutions to address the healthcare needs of our participants and their patients. Our participants rely on Consorta to provide both exceptional pricing and vendors who deliver exceptional customer service. FFF was selected for those very reasons - we felt that the company would be an excellent match. We're looking forward to doing business with FFF and the other vendors we've selected."

Consorta Inc. Backgrounder
Consorta Inc. is a leading healthcare resource management and group purchasing organization, whose shareholders are Catholic-sponsored, faith-based or nonprofit health systems. Consorta's guiding principles are based on the company's core values: creativity, respect, integrity, excellence and social responsibility.

As a cooperative, Consorta's shareholders and participants share fully in the organization's bottom-line performance, and receive significant discounts through scale purchasing economies.

Consorta’s shareholder healthcare systems operate more than half of all Catholic hospitals in the United States, own many extended and alternate care sites and have affiliate relationships with other nonprofit hospitals and alternate care facilities as well. The Consorta membership encompasses over 400 acute care facilities, representing 55,944 beds, and more than 1700 non-acute care sites. Consorta's annual purchasing volume exceeds $2.65 billion.

Based in Rolling Meadows, Ill., Consorta offers a complete contract portfolio with programs supporting alternate care, cardiovascular, med/surg, laboratory, pharmacy, food service, facilities, imaging, dietary and capital equipment. Targeted "group buy initiatives" provide significant savings opportunities for major patient care and diagnostic equipment purchases.

The Consorta membership includes Catholic Charities USA and the following shareholder organizations and systems, which own most of their facilities and are growing:

Ancilla Systems,
Hobart, IN

Ascension Health,
St. Louis, MO

Caritas Christi Health Care,
Boston, MA

Catholic Health Initiatives,
Denver, CO

Hospital Sisters Health System,
Springfield, IL

Ministry Health Care,
Milwaukee, WI

Provena Health,
Frankfort, IL

Saint Clare’s Health Services,
Denville, NJ

Sisters of St. Francis Health Services,
Mishawaka, IN

St. John Health System,
Tulsa, OK

Trinity Health,
Novi, MI

Via Christi Health System,
Wichita, KS

Wheaton Franciscan Services, Inc.,
Wheaton, IL