CVS plans to shutter 900 stores nationwide as it pivots to offering more primary care and minute-clinic services, as well as prescription delivery.
The Rhode Island-based pharmacy chain, the nation's largest, won't say how many stores it may close in Northwest Indiana, where it has an extensive footprint and recently took over the homegrown Fagan Pharmacy chain.
"It’s important to note these changes to our store footprint won’t begin until the end of Q1 2022 — we’ll provide more details, including specific locations, when available," spokesman Charlie Rice-Minoso said."The decision to close stores over the course of the next three years follows a deep analytical look at changes in population, consumer buying patterns and future health needs. It’s about optimizing our footprint and updating some store locations that were chosen years — or decades — ago. Closing these stores allows us to invest in our colleagues and our consumer experience."
CVS said it is trying to avoid layoffs.
"All impacted colleagues will be offered opportunities in other locations or roles in the company," Rice-Minoso said. "In fact, we are creating a dedicated team that will be focused on helping to redeploy impacted colleagues."
Rival pharmacy chain Walgreen's recently closed four stores in Gary and another near the state line in Calumet City while cutting back on the hours of stores that had been open 24 hours in Northwest Indiana.
CVS said it will reduce store density in some markets while closing 300 stores a year for the next three years.
"Our retail stores are fundamental to our strategy and who we are as a company," said Karen Lynch, president and CEO of CVS Health. "We remain focused on the competitive advantage provided by our presence in thousands of communities across the country, which complements our rapidly expanding digital presence."
CVS expects to write down an impairment charge of $1 billion to $1.2 billion in the fourth quarter as it writes down the store closings.
The pharmacy chain has locations in Cedar Lake, Chesterton, Crown Point, Demotte, Dyer, East Chicago, Gary, Griffith, Hammond, Highland, Hobart. LaPorte, Merrillville, Michigan City, Munster, North Judson, Portage, Rensselaer, Saint John, Valparaiso and Whiting. It currently operates more than 35 locations in Northwest Indiana.
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