A new retail leader in health and wellness
Albertsons is positioning itself to become a one-stop shop for consumers' health and wellness needs through a deal to buy Rite Aid.
Albertsons announced plans Tuesday to acquire Rite Aid in a cash and stock deal. The merger comes as Albertsons starts to strengthen same-day deliveries, a meal-kit business and other products that cater to customers who want fast service and products that match their healthier lifestyles.
“This powerful combination enables us to become a truly differentiated leader in delivering value, choice, and flexibility to meet customers’ evolving food, health, and wellness needs,” said Rite Aid Chairman and Chief Executive Officer John Standley. “The combined platform positions Rite Aid to capitalize on our pharmacy expertise and expand and enhance our pharmacy footprint. We are confident that delivering improved customer experiences and value will drive growth and profitability while creating compelling long-term value for shareholders.”
Standley will become Chief Executive Officer of the combined company, with current Albertsons Companies Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Bob Miller serving as Chairman. The combined company is expected to be comprised of leadership from both companies and will be dual headquartered in Boise, Idaho, and Camp Hill, Pa.
The integrated company will operate approximately 4,900 locations, 4,350 pharmacy counters, and 320 clinics across 38 states and Washington, D.C., serving 40+ million customers per week. Most Albertsons Companies pharmacies will be rebranded as Rite Aid, and the company will continue to operate Rite Aid stand-alone pharmacies.
A combined Albertsons and Rite Aid would have a value of roughly $24 billion, including debt. When the deal closes, Albertsons shares will trade on the New York Stock Exchange.
Albertsons said other benefits of the deal include:
- Enhancing Geographic Footprint and Creating Local Networks in Attractive Geographies. The new company will have an expanded footprint and be ranked first or second in 66% of the top metropolitan areas in the United States and will be ranked first or second in 70% of pharmacy locations. It will establish the leading integrated food, health, and wellness retailer on the West Coast and will have a strong brand position in the Northeast.
- Leveraging Strong Pharmacy Network and Rite Aid’s Pharmacy Benefit Management Company, EnvisionRxOptions, to Drive Customer Growth. The combined company will be positioned to drive incremental growth by deepening existing relationships and expanding reach across higher-value pharmacy customers. This will be achieved through a full suite of health and wellness capabilities, including specialty pharmacy offerings and in-store RediClinics in larger Albertsons Companies stores and stand-alone Rite Aid In addition, investing in preferred relationships with EnvisionRxOptions, other PBMs, and regional payors is expected to drive prescription growth.
- Utilizing Data Analytics and Integrated Loyalty Programs to Drive Growth and Target New Customers. The new company will capitalize on enhanced data and analytics to unlock profitable growth through new customer acquisition, new merchandising programs, and demand forecasting. It will also create cross-branded opportunities for its loyalty programs, improving connections across a combined current base of 25 million active loyalty program participants.
- Combining Strong Own Brand Portfolios with Extensive Manufacturing and Distribution Network to Drive Revenue Growth and Operating Efficiencies. The combination of Albertsons Companies’ billion dollar own brands, including O Organics and Lucerneâ, and its manufacturing and operating capabilities, with Rite Aid’s own brands in health and wellness, including B4Yä and Daylogicä, and its pharmacy expertise will allow the combined company to drive growth opportunities and efficiencies across its purchasing, marketing, manufacturing, and merchandising functions.
- Serving Customers When, Where, and How They Want to Shop. The combined company’s expanding omni-channel platform will provide customers with convenience, choice, and flexibility through multiple in-store formats, digital channels, and same-day food and prescription delivery options from stores and via Drive Up & Go.
“The hallmark of Albertsons Companies’ business has been to become the favorite local supermarket of our customers,” said Bob Miller, Albertsons Companies Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “We have always put our customers first, and our combination with Rite Aid will enable us to even better serve the valuable pharmacy customer by providing a fully integrated one-stop-shop for our customers’ food, health, and wellness needs. I have long known the excellent management team at Rite Aid, and we share a singular focus on superior customer service and a clear vision and strategy to become the favorite local supermarket and pharmacy to shoppers in every neighborhood we serve.”
This deal follows Rite Aid's attempt in 2015 to sell to its 4,600 stores to Walgreens. That deal was whittled down by regulators to a purchase of 1,932 stores for $4.37 billion.
As part of the deal, Rite Aid shareholders will have the right to exchange 10 shares of Rite Aid common stock for one share of Albertsons common stock plus roughly $1.83 in cash or 1.079 shares of Albertsons stock. Depending on the shareholders' elections, Rite Aid will own a 28 percent to 29.6 percent stake in the combined company and current Albertsons shareholders will own 70.4 percent to 72 percent, on a fully diluted basis.
The new company's revenues would be about $83 billion.