Retail N Illinois

Walgreens to close 600 stores, mostly Rite Aid locations


Deerfield, Illinois-based Walgreens Boots Alliance – the parent company of Walgreens drug stores – will close 600 of its drugstores across the country as part of its purchase of rival drugstore chain Rite Aid Corp.

Walgreens paid $4.38 billion to purchase Rite Aid.

Michael Polzin, spokesman for Walgreens, made the announcement Oct. 25 during a conference call. He said the 600 closed stores will be mostly Rite Aid locations that are close to existing Walgreens shops.

Walgreens’ Rite Aid buy is a big one. The company acquired 1,932 stores and three distribution centers from Rite Aid. Walgreens plans to absorb all the Rite Aid stores by the spring of 2018.

By purchasing so many stores, though, Walgreens is left with facilities it doesn’t necessarily need. That’s why the company plans to close so many drugstores. According to the conference call, Walgreens will begin its round of closings in the spring of 2018. The closings will bring Walgreens $300 million in annual savings through the end of August, 2020.

Walgreens has not yet announced which stores it will close.