Rite Aid acquires retail operator, plans more 'Wellness' store upgrades

Rite Aid (NYSE: RAD) has acquired RediClinic, a retail clinic operator, as part of its overall strategy to offer more healthcare products and services.

RediClinic runs 30 retail health clinics in or next to grocery stores in Texas. It plans to add about 70 more over the next 18 to 24 months in Texas, including some in Rite Aid's existing drugstores.

The acquisition comes as Rite Aid announced on Thursday a higher-than-expected quarterly profit, helped by a 3.5 percent rise in pharmacy sales. Revenue rose 2.2 percent to $6.6 billion, slightly higher than analysts' predictions of $6.54 billion. Same-store sales during the quarter rose 2.1 percent.

The company also plans to expand the "Wellness Store" format, which the retailer introduced in 2011. Rite Aid's Wellness Stores offer more organic food and natural personal care products and a line of home fitness equipment that the company helped design. Rite Aid said that it now has 1,215 wellness stores and that the store format will continue to be a part of its growth strategy.

Earlier this week, Rite Aid announced the expansion of its health coaching program for people with chronic ailments through an acquisition of Boston-based Health Dialog Services, a health adviser and care analytics provider. Through the new deal, Rite Aid will offer more in-pharmacy health coaching for medical decisions, chronic conditions and wellness, population analytic solutions and consulting services.

Drugstores are adding more health programs to meet the growing healthcare needs of customers. Rite Aid competitors Walgreens (NYSE:WAG) and CVS/pharmacy (NYSE: CVS) have built hundreds of clinics inside their stores in recent years as they push to provide more care and services.

Rite Aid did not disclose the terms of the deal.

For more:
-See this Rite Aid press release
-See this Rite Aid earnings call transcript

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