Magazine article Drug Topics

R.I. Chain Moves into Atlanta under CVS Corporate Name

Magazine article Drug Topics

R.I. Chain Moves into Atlanta under CVS Corporate Name

Article excerpt

CVS has been undergoing great change recently. For one thing, its parent, Melville Corp., decided to change its name to CVS Corp., reflecting its new status as a stand-alone drug chain company. For another, CVS recently entered the Atlanta market.

When CVS decided to expand into Atlanta, it was not just a limited test. The Woonsocket, R.L.-based company opened nine stores there on Oct. 3. It plans to open another 12 by the end of 1996 as well as 20 more in Greater Atlanta in 1997. Greenville, S.C., is also slated for a drugstore in 1997.

"Eventually, CVS plans to expand its Atlanta market operations to include 100-125 drugstores throughout the metropolitan region," said Thomas Ryan, CVS vice chairman and COO, who described the company's simultaneous nine-store introduction as "part of the renaissance of Atlanta."

At the Atlanta stores, CVS showcased such new prototype features as a photo department-CVS Picture Place-at the front of the store-bright with signage and lighting and offering one-hour photofinishing service seven days a week. More cameras and accessories were added to the presentation.

Fred McGrail, director of corporate communications, also called attention to Beauty Source, which is permanently staffed by specially trained employees. "Photo and beauty are destination categories. They make a big statement to customers in the new stores." Another change has been to make seasonal aisles wider.

A standard pharmacy service available from other CVS stores will also be offered to the Atlanta market. The service, known as Healthwise, is a free presentation by CVS pharmacists to community groups, schools, organizations, senior citizen centers, and others, covering all age groups, McGrail explained. Subjects include drug abuse and prevention, proper use of prescriptions and OTCs, and poison control. …

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