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Walgreens to buy Snyders stores from Katz

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Walgreen Co. plans to acquire Katz Group North America's 25 corporate-owned Snyders Drug Stores in Minnesota.

Financial terms of the transaction, expected to close later this month, weren't disclosed.

With the deal, the 80-year-old Snyders chain will cease operations of its company-owned stores, and Canada-based Katz Group will no longer operate drug stores in the United States.

DEERFIELD, Ill. — Walgreen Co. plans to acquire Snyders Drug Stores’ 25 company-owned stores in Minnesota from Katz Group North America.

Under the agreement, announced Wednesday, Walgreens has agreed to buy the pharmacy business and certain other assets of the corporate-owned Snyders stores from Katz. Financial terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.

Plans call for Walgreens to acquire and continue to operate certain Snyders locations, and the company said it expects to staff most positions at those stores with Snyders employees. Walgreens added that at other locations, it will purchase the prescription files and transfer them to nearby Walgreens pharmacies, and patients whose prescriptions are being transferred will be notified by letter once the transaction has been completed later this month.

After the transaction closes, Snyders expects to cease operations of its company-owned stores, according to Walgreens.

"We appreciate our customers’ many years of loyalty and patronage," Snyders president Neal Wahlman said in a statement. "We determined that Snyders patients and customers could best be served by a large national player like Walgreens. In most cases, Walgreens had nearby pharmacies, which will facilitate a smooth transition."

Jeff Bruneteau, Minnesota market vice president for Walgreens, commented, "Walgreens trusted pharmacy service goes back 109 years, including more than 80 years in Minnesota. Our pharmacy staffs will be ready to make the transition as seamless as possible for Snyders patients. We look forward to continuing Snyders tradition of quality pharmacy service in communities around Minnesota."

Snyders, which celebrated its 80th anniversary in 2009, had been downsized by Katz, which acquired the chain in 1999. Besides operating drug stores, Snyders serviced roughly 30 independent retailers in the upper Midwest region.

The sale means Katz will no longer operate drug stores in the United States. The Edmonton, Alberta-based company operates about 1,900 drug stores overall, mainly under the Rexall name in Canada.


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