Food & Culture

Bartell Drugs Bought By Rite Aid for $95M

The 130-year-old chain’s brand will remain

By Rob Smith October 7, 2020

Lentzsch

Struggling Rite Aid Corp. has purchased Seattle’s iconic Bartell Drugs for $95 million.

Bartell, which has been family-owned since its launch in 1890, employs more than 1,700, operates 67 stores throughout the Puget Sound region and generated more than $550 million in revenue last year. Rite Aid will keep the Bartell name.

“Rite Aid’s vision fits well with what we think will best serve the needs of our customers,” says George Bartell, grandson of founder George Bartell Sr. “Looking forward to the future with Rite Aid.”

Rite Aid was identified as having an elevated risk of bankruptcy in the next 12 months in a recent report by industry website RetailDive and CreditRiskMoitor, which analyzed metrics such as stock market capitalization and volatility, financial ratios and bond agency ratings.

Rite Aid, which is based in Camp Hill, Pennsylvania, operates 2,400 retail pharmacy locations in 18 states. Rite Aid operates 69 stores in the Puget Sound region.

“Expansion within the growing Seattle area will allow Rite Aid to better serve customers, health plans and health care providers,” says Rite Aide Chief Executive Officer and President Heyward Donigan.

Bartell Drugs hired its first non-family member CEO in the company’s history in 2015. Its second non-family CEO, Kathi Lentzsch, was hired in early 2018. Lentzsch quickly became an outspoken advocate for the business community and was especially critical of the rising crime rate in downtown Seattle. She will remain CEO, at least for now.

The deal is expected to be finalized next Spring, at the end of Rite Aid’s fiscal 2021 year.

Elena shoot 2018 Where Magazine cover postcards copy-min

Fave Five

Apparel, Art, Ice Cream, Music

1 SATISFY your fashion appetite with sustainable luxury. Sell Your Sole Consignment features only mint condition women’s designer clothing and accessories. Gucci, Louis Vuitton, The Row, Hermèes, Celine, Chanel and many others wait inside this inconspicuous boutique in Belltown for their second life with you. Feel good knowing you’re reducing your environmental footprint when you…

MOTSI

Holiday Gift Guide 2021

Surprise with these unique offerings

Perhaps we’re a little biased, but who doesn’t love a good magazine? Big Little News, a new newsstand in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, boasts more than 250 domestic and foreign magazines. Add beer, wine, Champagne, gifts and sundries, and Big Little’s bimonthly subscription box makes for a creative and unique holiday gift. A sample gift…

Knack_0319a_0

Laura Jennings: The Giving Guide

The entrepreneur has a 'Knack' for gifting

This story appeared in the November-December issue of Seattle magazine. Visit seattlemag.com/subscribe. The best gift Laura Jennings ever received was a baseball It couldn’t have cost more than $5, and Jennings wasn’t heading to the dugout anytime soon. But with the unexpected gift came a note from her husband, who wrote that Laura had proven…

VAN-MOOF

The Power of Pop-ups

Seattle shop has been a hit with tenants and customers

The retail landscape with which we ended 2020 is not the same one that we see in the first quarter of 2021; the coronavirus pandemic has transformed an already struggling industry for the foreseeable future. According to retail analytics firm Core-sight Research, about 8,400 stores closed across the United States last year.  And it’s no secret that…

Fernish-1

Fernish lets you be Fickle about Furniture

If you lack couch commitment, you can rent instead

Fernish co-founders Lucas Dickey, left, and Michael Barlow

Magnum-of-2017-Tinte-Cellars-Cabernet-Sauvignon_0

Holiday Gift Guide: Stuff Your Stockings

Go small to go big this holiday season with these unique gifts

First: Tinte Cellars; Second: Tokki; Third: Untamed Humans