Rite Aid Corp. saw comparable-store sales surge in April, lifted by gains in the front end from the later Easter holiday and in comparable pharmacy sales and script count.


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April same-store sales climb at Rite Aid

May 1st, 2014

CAMP HILL, Pa. – Rite Aid Corp. saw comparable-store sales surge in April, lifted by gains in the front end from the later Easter holiday and in comparable pharmacy sales and script count.

The drug chain said Thursday that for the four weeks ended April 26, same-store sales rose 5% year over year.

In the front-end, comp-store sales grew 4.7%, with 4.6% of the gain stemming from a shift in the timing of Easter, which fell on April 20 this year versus March 31 last year, Rite Aid said. The later Easter had impacted overall same-store sales for March, which increased 0.7%.

During April, comparable pharmacy sales advanced 5.2%, despite a negative impact of 138 basis points from introductions of new generic drugs, which have lower selling prices but higher profit margins. Prescription count at comparable stores rose 2.3% in the month.

Rite Aid's total drug store sales for April were up 4.9% to almost $2 billion from about $1.9 billion a year earlier. Prescription sales accounted for 67.9% of drug store sales.

For the year to date, covering the eight weeks ended April 26, same-store sales gained 2.9% year over year, reflecting a 0.2% dip in the front end and a 4.3% increase in the pharmacy. Prescriptions filled at comparable stores were up 1.7%.

Overall drug store sales for the eight weeks came in at $3.94 billion, up 2.6% from $3.84 billion in the prior-year period. Prescription sales represented 68.7% of total drug store sales in that time span.

As of April 26, Rite Aid operated 4,583 drug stores, compared with 4,619 stores a year ago.

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