• Walgreen Co. is purchasing a regional drugstore chain in the mid-South region of the US from Stephen L. LaFrance Holdings, Inc. and members of the LaFrance family. The transaction includes 144 stores currently operated under the USA Drug, Super D Drug, May’s Drug, Med-X and Drug Warehouse stores located in Arkansas, Kansas, Mississippi, Missouri, New Jersey, Oklahoma and Tennessee.
The acquisition also includes corporate offices, a distribution center located in Pine Bluff, AR, and a wholesale and private brand business, for a total of approximately $438 million subject to adjustment in certain circumstances. The chain recorded sales of $825 million in 2011.
“This acquisition expands our business in an important region of the country,” said Walgreens president and CEO Greg Wasson. “It will provide significant new pharmacy business for us in this region while also enabling us to bring the Walgreens experience to many additional smaller communities where USA Drug has developed strong operational expertise.”
The transaction is subject to satisfaction of regulatory requirements and other closing conditions, and is expected to close around Sept. 1, 2012.
“What is now USA Drug began from a single store I opened in Pine Bluff, IA, in 1968 and has grown to more than 140 stores in seven states,” said Stephen L. LaFrance, chairman and owner of Stephen L. LaFrance Holdings, Inc. “We chose to sell our business to Walgreens not only because it is the premier drugstore company in our industry, but also because Walgreens will continue to provide our customers with the service and products they have come to expect.
The acquired drugstores will continue in the near term to operate under their current brand names after the transaction closes, and decisions will be made over time regarding the best, most effective way to harmonize Walgreens and the acquired brands.