Walgreens is one of the largest drug store chains in the U.S., ahead of CVS, Rite-Aid, Wal-Mart etc. based on store counts. In 1909, the company's founder, Charles Walgreen Sr., purchased one of the busiest drug stores on Chicago's South Side, and transformed it by constructing an ice cream fountain that featured his own brand of ice cream. The ice cream fountain was the forerunner of the famous Walgreen' soda fountain, which became the main attraction for customers from the 1920s through the 1950s. The company continued to be innovative by 1st to introduce child-resistant cap, by pioneering computerized pharmacies connected by satellite in 1981, completing chain-wide point-of-sale scanning in 1991, and introducing freestanding stores with drive-thru pharmacies in 1992. It also operates worksite health centers, home care facilities and specialty, institutional and mail service pharmacies. Its Take Care Health Systems subsidiary manages 247 convenient care clinics at Walgreens drug stores.
Walgreens, the second largest chain store operator in the U.S. with more than 6,600 drug stores throughout the U.S. and Puerto Rico, generated $59.0 billion in sales in fiscal year 2008.2 Walgreens have had 34 consecutive years of record sales and earnings. Walgreens filled about 583 million prescriptions in fiscal year 2007 accounting for about 17% of the U.S. retail market.2 Prescription drugs account for nearly two-thirds of sales; the rest comes from general merchandise, over-the-counter medications, cosmetics, and groceries. In 2007 Walgreens recorded share growth in 58 of top 60 product categories compared to food, drug and mass merchandise competitors as measured by A.C. Nielsen.1 For added convenience, most stores offer drive-through pharmacies, and almost all offer one-hour photo processing. Walgreens has long resisted the merger fever that has spread through the drug store industry. Instead, it stresses internal growth strategies such as large-scale infiltrations of...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document