Inside This Issue - News
Every new Duane Reade is a departure
August 27th, 2012
NEW YORK – Duane Reade has proven equal to the challenge of creating a worthy successor to its flagship store at 40 Wall Street in Manhattan, which after its debut in July 2011, quickly became a model of what the 21st-century drug store can be.
Duane Reade's store at 100 Broadway is housed in the historic American Surety building in the Financial District of Manhattan.
Located just 100 yards from 40 Wall Street, the new outlet, at 100 Broadway, applies many of the same design and merchandising principles and builds on them in innovative ways.
“Consistent with what we’re doing through the Duane Reade group of stores, we kept all the architectural amenities intact wherever we could,” says Mike De Fazio, senior director of store concepts at the drug chain and its corporate parent, Walgreen Co. “Forty Wall Street was handled the same way. It would be an injustice to do anything different than leave it the way it is.”
Housed in the historic American Surety building in the Financial District at the southeast corner of Pine Street across from historic Trinity Church, the 22,000-square-foot Duane Reade at 100 Broadway is centered on a soaring, three-story atrium with impressive interior columns and a coffered ceiling.
“This is a great location and we jumped at the chance when it became available,” De Fazio notes. “There’s a ton of foot traffic, with tourists, office workers and a growing number of residents. Things are coming together to create a perfect storm.”
As has been the case at Duane Reade in recent years, the new 24-hour outlet includes some striking departures. Building on the retailer’s “Up Market” format, the store has a gourmet chopped salad bar, “Up Market Chop”; a cafe staffed by a barista; an assortment of Up Market self-serve soups; and self-serve Fro-Yo.
“We don’t have those amenities in any other Duane Reade,” says De Fazio. “Like 40 Wall Street, it’s a testing ground for concepts that we might want to roll out at other Duane Reade and Walgreens locations. Our goal is to structure each store around the needs of the customers who shop there.”
Scott McCulloch, senior director of merchandising at Duane Reade, notes that food, which is all grouped in the ground floor, represents the biggest departure in the product mix, with “grab-and-go” lunches complementing standard convenience food offerings.
The store also features a Papyrus greeting card section located on the mezzanine, in addition to the usual American Greetings assortment, a pairing that has lifted overall social expressions sales, and a growing assortment of private brands that Duane Reade shares with its parent company.
“Our group works very closely with the merchandisers at Walgreens, especially in areas like seasonal products,” says McCulloch. “We are unique and operate exclusively in an urban environment, but the basic mix is getting closer every day. Our GMMs [general merchandise managers] and category managers work closely with their counterparts at Walgreens on such things as promotions, shopper loyalty and overall strategy.”
The top floor houses the prescription counter, which is powered by the Walgreens Pharmacy Network; over-the-counter health care and beauty products; and household goods. The upper windows overlooking Broadway’s “Canyon of Heroes” are framed by a museum-like display of past ticker-tape parades.
“New York Living Made Easy is what Duane Reade is all about,” says De Fazio, “but we’re a subset of a bigger picture. Walgreens’ guiding strategy is to be the health and daily living destination for everybody in America. That’s what we try to embody in every store we open. We’re committed to taking the best of the flagship stores and, where appropriate, rolling out those amenities based on the characteristics of local consumers. Going forward, we’ll tailor every store to fit the needs of the community. It’s not going to be a one-size-fits-all Walgreens anymore.”