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Thrift's Eckerd acquisition would create 2,800-store chain in Northeast, Midwest, Sunbelt.

This article was originally published in The Rose Sheet

Executive Summary

THRIFT-ECKERD MERGER TO TEST LIMITS OF TRADE COMMISSION TOLERANCE of pharmacy chain consolidation. The combination of J.C. Penney's Thrift Drug subsidiary and Eckerd announced Nov. 3 more closely resembles the failed Rite Aid-Revco merger than the several intervening transactions in the chain drug industry. FTC blocked Rite Aid from acquiring Revco because of concerns that the chains' geographic overlap would adversely affect competition. Rite Aid-Revco would have had 4,500 stores, and would have been especially strong in the Midwest and the mid-Atlantic states.

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