In the retail pharmacy industry, there are only three pure pharmacy firms: CVS/Pharmacy, Walgreens, and Rite-Aid. Pure pharmacy firms are pharmacy retailers whose business is built around the pharmacy. Wal-Mart, Kroger, and local grocery stores have pharmacies as an extension of their business plan, but it is not the focus of their company. CVS/Pharmacy and Walgreens have been battling over the top position for years, and Rite-Aid has been ranked at a steady third in the market place.
The future articles will analyze and compare the performance of CVS/Pharmacy and Walgreens.
CVS/Pharmacy- CVS/Pharmacy began operations in 1963, and added the pharmacy department in 1967. In 2007, CVS merged with Caremark Rx, Inc. Finally, in 2008, CVS bought the Longs Drug Store chain. CVS has over 7000 stores(Cvs.com, 2010). At the end of 9 months of 2010, the company has lost 9.25% against 2009 net income. However, the company has increased their assets and liabilities by .1% against 2009 figures(Cvs.com, 2010). As the company stands now in trends, Net revenues for this 7,100-store drugstore retailer were $23.9 billion for Q3 2010, down 3.1% from $24.6 billion in the prior year's period. Poor performance by the company's Pharmacy Services segment—its revenues dropped 8.5%, to $11.9 billion—was a major contributor to the company's woes. CVS' Retail Pharmacy segment revenues actually increased 4.1%, with total same-store sales climbing 2.5%(Trendwatch, 2010).
Walgreens- Walgreens is CVS/Pharmacy's chief competitor. Founded in 1901, Walgreens is considerably older. Unlike CVS/Pharmacy, Walgreens began with the pharmacy department. With 6000 stores, Walgreens is smaller than CVS. In 2010, Walgreens has increased sales against last year by 6.4%, and net earnings by 4.2%(Walgreens.com, 2010). Moreover, they have posted 36 straight years of sales gains, and 35 straight years of dividend payments(Walgreens.com, 2010). Finally, Walgreens has posted net earnings for 5 consecutive years. Despite Walgreens smaller size, it has a bigger market share at 31.2% compared to CVS/Pharmacy's 25%(Wikinvest.com, 2010).
In conclusion, Walgreens & CVS/Pharmacy are the giants in retail pharmacy. Their strengths, weaknesses, successes, and failures have brought them to a virtual dead heat. The purpose of this research is analyze the financial strength of both to determine which is in the best financial health.
CVS/Pharmacy. (2010). www.cvs.com
Retail Information Systems. (2010). http://risnews.edgl.com/retail-trends/Tr
Walgreens. (2010). www.walgreens.com
Wikinvest. (2010). http://www.wikinvest.com/stock/CVS_Carem