Walgreens posts 8.6% increase in August sales

DEERFIELD, Ill. Walgreens announced August sales of $5.66 billion, an increase of 8.6% from $5.22 billion for the same month in 2009. Duane Reade stores, acquired in April 2010, contributed 2.8 percentage points to the total sales increase for the month.

Comparable-store sales increased 2.1%. The effect of calendar day shifts positively impacted total comparable sales by 1.0 percentage point. Comparable-store sales results exclude Duane Reade results.

August pharmacy sales increased 8.6%, while comparable-pharmacy sales increased 2.9%. The effect of calendar day shifts positively impacted comparable-pharmacy sales by 1.5 percentage points. Comparable-pharmacy sales were negatively impacted by 2.6 percentage points due to generic drug introductions in the last 12 months and by 0.3 percentage point due to lower incidence of flu. Pharmacy sales accounted for 66.1% of total sales for the month.

Prescriptions filled at comparable stores increased 5.1% in August, including 1.2 percentage points due to more patients filling 90-day prescriptions. Calendar day shifts positively impacted prescriptions filled in comparable stores by 1.7 percentage points, while the lower incidence of flu negatively impacted comparable prescriptions filled by 0.7 percentage point.

Total front-end sales increased 8.3% in August, including 4.8 percentage points from Duane Reade. Comparable-store front-end sales increased 0.7%. Customer traffic in comparable stores decreased 0.8%, while basket size increased 1.5%.

Calendar year-to-date sales were $44.74 billion, an increase of 5.8% from $42.27 billion in 2009. Total sales for fourth quarter 2010, which ended Aug. 31, were $16.89 billion, up 7.6% from $15.7 billion. Fourth-quarter comparable-store sales increased 1.5%.

Total sales for fiscal 2010 were $67.44 billion, up 6.5% from $63.34 billion. Comparable-store sales for fiscal 2010 increased 1.6%.

Walgreens opened 27 stores during August, including four relocations, and closed five. At Aug. 31, Walgreens operated 8,053 locations in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam.

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