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The St. Louis Post Dispatch reports that drugstore chain CVS is going to acquire 110 in-store pharmacies operated by Schnuck Markets, and will rebrand and operate 99 of them.

Eleven in-store and specialty Schnuck pharmacies are slated to be closed, with prescription files transferred to local CVS locations.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

While Walgreen is the dominant drugstore chain in the region, the Post Dispatch notes that this deal gooses CVS's local presence, as well as builds on a growth strategy conceived more than five years ago.

"In 2015, CVS Health Corp. bought Target’s 1,672 pharmacies and clinic businesses for about $1.9 billion to operate as a store-within-a-store format. There are six CVS pharmacies in local Targets — on Hampton Avenue in south St. Louis, on Rusty Road in south St. Louis County, and in Brentwood, Kirkwood, Belleville and Fairview Heights."

In a statement, chairman/CEO Todd Schnuck said, “As Schnucks continues to expand our emphasis on health and wellness, this collaboration with CVS is an opportunity for us to align with a company that has a similar focus.  This partnership allows us to continue to provide quality pharmacy services to our customers in a manner they’ve come to expect, while supporting our mission to nourish people’s lives."

KC's View:

It is interesting to watch how CVS and Walgreen - to varying degrees and with different approaches - are working with other retailers to grow their footprint.  For CVS, it is deals like the ones with Target and Schnuck that probably will make those pharmacies less of a drain on resources on those retailers.  For Walgreen, it is deals like the one it has with Kroger that turns its drugstores into pickup points for people who order from Kroger';s website, as well as creating small Kroger food sections inside its drugstores.

Which makes me wonder if Schnuck could work a deal with CVS that would allow it to create curated food sections inside area CVS stores.  It could make a lot of sense.