WOONSOCKET, RI, April 9, 1998 -- CVS Corporation (NYSE:CVS) today announced that same store sales for the five weeks ended March 28, 1998 increased 3.0% over the prior year period. Pharmacy same store sales rose 12.7%. Total pharmacy sales represented 59% of total company sales for March. Total sales for the five week period were $1.25 billion, an increase of 1.0% from sales of $1.23 million in the prior year period. Sales results for March reflect the shift in the Easter holiday to April 12 this year from March 30 last year.
Same store sales for the thirteen-week period ended March 28, 1998, increased 7.3% over the prior year period. Pharmacy same store sales, year-to-date, increased 14.4%. Total sales for the thirteen-week period were $3.33 billion, an increase of 5.5% from sales of $3.16 billion in 1997.
On a stand-alone basis, CVS same store sales advanced 3.1% in March, while Revco’s increased 2.8%. For the thirteen-week period ended March 28, 1998, CVS’ same store sales rose 8.9%, while Revco’s increased 5.3%.
"The pharmacy business showed continued strength in March, especially given that we were up against strong pharmacy sales related to the extended flu season last year," stated Tom Ryan, CVS/Pharmacy’s President and Chief Executive Officer. "As expected, March front store sales were adversely affected by the shift in the Easter holiday. We anticipate solid April results due not only to the positive impact of the Easter shift but also the promotional activities associated with the name change events launched at the end of March in two Revco markets."
CVS is the leading drug store chain in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Southeast and Midwest regions. As of March 28, 1998, CVS operated 3,856 stores in 24 states and the District of Columbia. Effective March 31, 1998 upon the completion of the Arbor Drugs, Inc. acquisition, CVS operated 4,064 stores in 25 states and the District of Columbia. The sales results of Arbor are not included in the March reported numbers.
General information about CVS, including corporate background and press releases, is available through CVS’ web site at http://www.CVS.com.