Walgreen Co. has entered an agreement to acquire 18 ApothecaryRx pharmacies from Graymark Healthcare Inc.

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Walgreens to buy ApothecaryRx pharmacies

September 1st, 2010

DEERFIELD, Ill. – Walgreen Co. has entered an agreement to acquire 18 ApothecaryRx pharmacies from Graymark Healthcare Inc.

Oklahoma City-based Graymark said the sale, announced late Wednesday afternoon, is valued at about $35 million and includes essentially all of the assets of ApothecaryRx, its independent retail pharmacy business. The pharmacies are located in Colorado, Oklahoma, Minnesota, Missouri and Illinois.

ApothecaryRx was founded in 2006 and purchased large, successful independent retail pharmacies while retaining their local identities and community focus, according to Graymark.

"After examining all the choices, we believe that these stores will now best be positioned to succeed and continue to serve the needs of their communities within the Walgreens family," stated Stanton Nelson, chairman and chief executive officer of Graymark, which plans to concentrate on its sleep apnea business.

The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter, according to the companies.

"We have a long history of providing high quality pharmacy services in these markets," Walgreens operations vice president Bill Miller said in a statement. "Our staff is dedicated to making the transition as seamless as possible for our new customers. We look forward to introducing them to the unique offerings that have made Walgreens one of the country's most trusted providers of pharmacy, health and wellness services and daily living needs."

Since last year, Walgreens has made a series of acquisitions — including one big one — in areas where it can fill out its store base or quickly become a market leader.

In mid-March, Walgreens unveiled an agreement to acquire prescription files and other assets of 17 Ike's and Super D drug stores in the Memphis, Tenn., area from USA Drug. That deal came about a month after the Deerfield, Ill.-based drug store giant's blockbuster $1.08 billion acquisition of metropolitan New York chain Duane Reade, which has more than 250 stores.

And just weeks before the Duane Reade deal, Walgreens agreed to buy three Farmacias El Amal stores in Puerto Rico as well as prescription files from 11 other El Amal pharmacies. Walgreens also announced a deal to acquire Snyders Drug Stores' 25 company-owned stores in Minnesota from Katz Group North America.

Walgreens also made several acquisitions in 2009. In late October, the retailer inked a deal to purchase 12 Eaton Apothecary pharmacies in the Boston area from D.A.W. Inc. And in March 2009, Walgreens unveiled an agreement to buy about 30 stores from Drug Fair in New Jersey and, in the previous month, said it planned to acquire seven Rite Aid stores in San Francisco and five Rite Aid locations in Idaho.