Kroger and Walgreens announced a partnership of the companies to test a new format that combines Kroger’s grocery knowledge with Walgreens expertise in pharmacy, health and beauty.
“This exciting collaboration aligns with Kroger’s vision of serving America through food inspiration and uplift,” said Rodney McMullen, Kroger’s chairman and CEO. “This concept brings together the best of two great brands to rethink convenience and redefine the way America shops for food.”
Both companies have chosen 13 Walgreen stores in Northern Kentucky to try the new format and will conduct the pilot over the next several months, listening closely to customer feedback, according to a press release.
The pilot will let customers buy products and services from both retailers. Customers can order Kroger groceries online and pick them up at participating Walgreens locations.
Kroger store brands can be picked up at Walgreens
Customers will also be able to order Kroger store brands, including the retailer’s organic and natural brand Simple Truth at participating Walgreens locations.
“This innovative new concept is an opportunity to test and learn, as we determine how we can best work together to further elevate our customer offering,” said Stefano Pessina, executive vice chairman and CEO of Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. “We continue to evolve our offerings to meet the changing needs of our customers and provide a more differentiated shopping experience. We’ve been implementing new approaches to promotions, product selection and other areas to deliver greater value in our stores.”
This partnership comes in the midst of other retail and pharmacy chain deals, such as Amazon purchasing Whole Foods, as well as the online pharmacy Pillpack earlier this year. The partnership also comes in the wake of the failed merger between Albertsons and Rite Aid. In 2015, Target closed a $1.9 billion sale of its pharmacies to CVS, which now operates the pharmacies under the CVS Pharmacy name inside Target stores.