EAST WINDSOR, N.J. -- Genuardi's Family Markets opened its first pharmacy in a supermarket here last month, marking the launch of an aggressive push by the chain's parent company to offer prescription drugs through the regional, 36-unit chain.
Safeway, Pleasanton, Calif., which completed its acquisition of Genuardi's earlier this year, is planning to add six pharmacies to new and remodeled Genuardi's supermarkets in the next year, sources said. A second pharmacy opened last week in Glen Mills, Pa.
Officials at Safeway could not be reached for comment.
"Safeway is providing the money and the resources," said one source, who asked not to be identified.
Safeway's strategy is to try to acquire independent pharmacies in the area and transfer the staffs to Genuardi's stores, according to sources. In the case of the Glen Mills store, Genuardi's acquired the Concordville Pharmacy in nearby Concordville, Pa., and hired three pharmacists and four other pharmacy employees from the store, according to reports.
Genuardi's, Norristown, Pa., has most of its stores in eastern Pennsylvania. The chain tapped Acme Supermarkets veteran Mark Rabinowitz as regional pharmacy manager to lead pharmacy operations.
Meanwhile, Clemens Markets, Kulpsville, Pa., a 19-store chain in the region, also began rolling out pharmacies to its supermarkets. In June the chain opened its first pharmacy in Center Square, Pa., and a second is under construction in Perkasie, Pa., sources said.
Larry Schimpf, director of health and beauty care/nonfood, is overseeing the pharmacy operations. He declined to comment.