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Shopper's Drug Mart

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Shopper's Drug Mart

For the Washington, DC area grocery chain, see Shoppers Food & Pharmacy.

Shoppers Drug Mart Corporation
Industry Drugstore, Retail
Founded 1962
Headquarters Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Key people Murray Koffler, founder
Dominic Pilla, President & Chief Executive Officer
Holger Kluge, Chairman
Products Drugs, Health
Revenue Increase $10.376 billion CAD (2010)[1]
Operating income Increase $897.0 million CAD (2010)[1]
Net income Increase $590.7 million CAD (2010)[1]

References: Number of Shoppers Drug Mart and Pharmaprix stores: 1,241

Number of Home Health Care stores: 63

Shoppers Drug Mart Corporation is Canada's largest retail pharmacy chain, and it has its headquarters in North York, Toronto, Ontario.[2] It has more than 1,241 stores operating under the names Shoppers Drug Mart in nine provinces and two territories and Pharmaprix in Quebec as well as in Hawkesbury, Ontario.

Founded by Murray Koffler, the Koffler family still retains ownership of the Super-Pharm pharmacy which is in Israel, Poland, and China. Super-Pharm uses the same logo as Shoppers Drug Mart. It also uses some of the same private-label brands, such as Life Brand and Quo. On July 15, 2013, Loblaw Companies announced its acquisition of Shoppers Drug Mart in a deal worth $12.4 billion.


Shoppers Drug Mart Corporation is the licensor of full-service retail drug and convenience stores operating under the names Shoppers Drug Mart (Pharmaprix in Quebec). Founded in 1962 by Toronto pharmacist Murray Koffler, the company has expanded to a network of more than 1,240 Shoppers Drug Mart/Pharmaprix stores across Canada. These stores are owned and operated by Associate-Owners, all of which are licensed pharmacists. The company also licenses or owns more than 59 medical clinic pharmacies operating under the names Shoppers Simply Pharmacy (Pharmaprix Simplement Sants in Quebec), as well as 6 luxury beauty destinations operating as Murale.

In addition to its retail formats, the company owns and operates several specialty services. This includes 62 Shoppers Home Health Care stores, which sell and service assisted-living devices, home-care products, and mobility and medical equipment; Shoppers Drug Mart Specialty Health Network, a provider of specialty drug distribution, pharmacy and comprehensive patient support services, and; MediSystem Pharmacy, which is a country-wide network of 12 central-fill pharmacies providing pharmaceutical products and clinical services to long-term care facilities and retirement communities.[3]


At the age of twenty, Murray Koffler inherited two Koffler's Drugs pharmacies in suburban Toronto (one in the Don Mills Centre shopping mall). By 1962, Koffler's had grown to a chain of 17 pharmacies, which he renamed "Shoppers Drug Mart" in the 1970s.

Koffler revamped the concept of the 20th century “drug store” in Canada by removing the soda fountain and emphasizing the dispensary, requiring his pharmacists to wear starched white coats as a symbol of their professionalism. In the mid-1950s, he began acquiring other drug stores and organized them around a then-novel franchising concept: pharmacist “associates” would own and operate their own stores within the system and share in the profits. In 1968, Shoppers Drug Mart grew to 52 stores in Ontario by merging with 33 Plaza Drugstores. In 1970, Shoppers Drug Mart purchased 100 Cunningham Drug Stores in British Columbia and Alberta. 1972 marked the grand opening of the first Pharmaprix store in Québec. In 1974, Lord’s Supervalue Pharmacies 26 stores in Atlantic Canada joined the Shoppers Drug Mart family. In 1986 Shoppers Drug Mart bought Super X Drugstores, an Ontario-area chain of 72 stores. In 1992, the company bought up the Western Canadian chain Pinder's Drugs, and followed this in 1995 with a chain of 24 Bi-Rite Drug Stores based in western Canada. Also in 1995, Shoppers Drug Mart acquired 135 Big V Drugstores. In 1996, the first Shoppers Home Health Care store opens.

When Koffler retired in 1983, he sold the chain to Imasco. That same year, David Bloom, a former Shoppers Drug Mart pharmacist, was appointed Chief Executive Officer of the Company. Bloom would lead the organization until retiring in 2001, having devoted a total of 35 years of service to the Company. During David Bloom's tenure, Shoppers doubled its number of stores, quadrupled its sales and increased profit ten-fold. David Bloom also launched the Shoppers Optimum loyalty program in 2000 which quickly became the largest and most successful loyalty programs in Canada. The Optimum program currently boasts over 10 million members in Canada.

In 2000, after Imperial Tobacco had been taken over by BAT Industries (formerly British American Tobacco), Shoppers was sold to a consortium of institutional investors including Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. (KKR), Bain Capital, Inc., DLJ Merchant Banking Partners, Charlesbank Capital Partners, Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan, CIBC Capital Partners, and Shoppers Drug Mart's senior management and pharmacist/owners.

In 2001, Glenn Murphy was appointed Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Company. In November of that same year, Shoppers Drug Mart Corporation was publicly listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

In 2002, Shoppers Drug Mart introduced its first large format stores, with more space, a sleek and modern look, and a stronger focus on cosmetic products. Typically the cosmetics section faces the entrance, with the pharmacy counter at the back and a convenience food section, called Food Essentials, near the front cash. In most suburban areas, this new format takes the form of new or relocated store, typically stand-alone "big-box" locations as opposed to smaller mall or strip-mall locations.

In 2003, Shoppers Drug Mart introduced its first BeautyBoutique, setting a new standard for the industry with its open-sell display and unbiased approach to customer service in prestige cosmetic retailing. Today, there are more than 305 BeautyBoutiques across the country.

On April 26, 2007, Shoppers Drug Mart #1000 opened in Toronto, Ontario.[4]

In recent years, the chain has been moving to decrease its reliance on pharmaceutical sales and increase sales of what it calls "front of store" items, such as food and cosmetics. The store claims that in 2012, it increased its market share in food and that 51% of purchases now come from non-pharmaceutical items.[5]

On July 15, 2013, Loblaw Companies announced that it would acquire Shoppers Drug Mart for $12.4 billion.[6] If it receives regulatory and shareholder approval, this deal will mark the largest ever takeover of a Canadian retailer. After the sale is closed, Loblaw will keep the Shoppers Drug Mart brand. President's Choice products could appear at Shoppers Drug Mart while the Life brand could appear at other Loblaw stores like Real Canadian Superstore and Loblaws. The Shoppers Optimum program might be kept or merged with PC Plus or PC Points within the next 3 years after the sale closes.[7]

The firm’s shareholders voted in favour of a buy out bid from Loblaw Companies in September 2013 for $12.02 billion.[8]

Shoppers Optimum

Shoppers Optimum is a loyalty card program that is exclusive to Shoppers Drug Mart/Pharmaprix stores. Members collect Shoppers Optimum points that may be redeemed on purchases within the store. Shoppers Optimum members receive 100 points for every 10 dollars spent at the store. This excludes the purchase of lottery, tobacco products, transit tickets and passes, prescription items, any products containing codeine, Canada Post products and gift cards (except Shoppers gift cards). Events for bonus point collecting and/or redemption (e.g. 20x the points, bonus redemption) are regularly held. Due to Loblaw buying Shoppers Drug Mart, the future of the Shoppers Optimum program is uncertain.

Board of directors

  • Holger Kluge, Chair of the Board of Directors, Shoppers Drug Mart Corporation
  • Shan Atkins, Managing Director, Chetrum Capital, LLC (1)
  • James Hankinson, Corporate Director (1)
  • Krystyna T. Hoeg, Corporate Director (3)
  • Gaetan Lussier, Corporate Director (3)
  • The Honourable David Peterson, P.C., Q.C., Chairman & Senior Partner, Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLP (1)
  • Dominic Pilla, President & Chief Executive Officer
  • Dr. Martha Piper, Corporate Director (2)
  • Sarah Raiss, Corporate Director (2)
  • Derek Ridout, Corporate Director (2)
  • David M. Williams, Corporate Director (3)

(1) Member of Audit Committee
(2) Member of Human Resources and Compensation Committee
(3) Member of Nominating and Governance Committee


  • "You're Gonna Be Happy."—Early - mid 1980s
  • "Everything you Want in a Drugstore"—1980s and the early-1990s
  • "Take Care of Yourself"—2000 to 2002
  • "Your Life Store"—2002 to present
  • "Gifts Made Easy"—holiday campaign, 2006 to present

Purchase by Loblaw

In July 2013, the Canadian grocery retail giant, Loblaw Companies, announced it would acquire Shoppers Drug Mart for $12.4 billion CAD. Shoppers Drug Mart will keep its name and operate as a separate entity while adding certain Loblaw brands to its shelves. Shoppers Drug Mart will gain access to Loblaw's vast network of food suppliers and will benefit by the inherent increase in buying power. It is speculated that these factors may lead to lowered prices throughout Shoppers' 1,200+ locations. The merger will not lead to any store closures and will not cause any front-line employees to lose their job. As well, the popular Shoppers Optimum rewards program will remain in-place despite the merger.


External links

  • Shoppers Drug Mart
  • Pharmaprix
  • Murale
  • Shoppers Photo
  • Shoppers HomeHealthCare
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