Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Jean Coutu Group gears up for more Canadian acquisitions - report

Jean Coutu Group, a listed Canadian pharmacy chain, is gearing up for more acquisitions in Canada, according to a Globe and Mail report on 10 January.
Francois Coutu, who heads up Jean Coutu Group's Canadian business, was cited in the report as saying that the company is currently concentrating on closing a business transaction to sell to listed Pennsylvania-based Rite Aid its US drugstores. Once the deal is done, Jean Coutu Group will focus on growing its Canadian business via acquisitions, he explained. He added, however, that while the company will consider buying chains and independent outlets, it will not rush its growth strategy.
For the five weeks ended 30 December 2006, the company's Canadian franchise network's same store retail sales were up 8.4%, pharmacy same store sales gained 9.4% while front-end same store sales increased 7.4% year-over-year. The network showed a 9.1% increase in total retail sales compared with the same period last year. Retail sales for the period were CAD 290m (USD 246.2m).


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