Retail Merchandiser - March/April 2012 - (Page 54)

Retail HI-SCHOOL PHARMACY Centers of the Community Hi-School Pharmacy is a prominent retailer and pharmacy throughout rural communities in Oregon and Washington, thanks in part to the core employees at each location. Jack Holt www.hi-schoolpharmacy. com Vancouver, Wash. or more than 85 years, Hi-School Pharmacy has found success in rural communities that are typically underserved by big-box retailers and larger national chains. “In most of our markets, we’re the only pharmacy in town,” says Jack Holt, COO of the Vancouver, Wash.-based independently owned chain. “We’ve found a niche we’re able to fill in our communities.” While the chain of 29 pharmacies in Oregon and Washington serves similarly sized communities, its retail offerings are hardly uniform. “We can adapt our merchandise mix based on what the community needs,” Holt explains, citing fabric, craft or hardware products as examples. It understands these needs in part through its emphasis on local control. “We try not to be top-heavy as a corporation,” Holt says. “When we go into a new market we try to hire good managers and retain many of the employees that are already there. Our employees and managers are forthright with us because they live in the com- F munity, understand the needs and respond to them. “We empower our stores to make changes to their location and understand that not everything we do fits every market we’re in,” he adds. Hi-School sites also vary in size, from 1,000 to 40,000 square feet. Much of the chain’s expansion since its 1925 founding has come through acquisition of small pharmacies and drugstores. Hi-School Pharmacy owns many of its locations and oversees locations owned by a local partner. “I believe in a store-centered model of management – we’re there to support our stores, make them profitable and offer guidelines, but ultimately decision-making comes down to the store. Everything we do should be toward the goal of making stores profitable,” Holt says. Strong Involvement One way Hi-School’s upper management supports its stores is through its involvement in industry organizations, as well as lobbying. “Our biggest challenge is on the [insurance] reimbursement side, which 54 March/April 2012

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Retail Merchandiser - March/April 2012

Retail Merchandiser - March/April 2012
Creating Value
Design Strategies
Toy Fair 2012 Wrap-Up
Expo West 2012 Wrap-Up
Fashion Week
Category Insight
China Sourcing Fair 2012 Preview
Cover Story: Jessica Simpson
charming CHARLIE
Fantastic Sams
The Bargain! Shop
Sportsman’s Warehouse
Fruth Pharmacy
Apricot Lane Boutique
Hi-School Pharmacy
Hallmark Cards Canada
Metropolitan Transportation Authority
Rubie’s Costume Co.
Fashion Angels
K’NEX Brands
Total Wine & More
Sigel’s Beverages
O&W Inc.
New Hampshire State Liquor Commission
Kohler Distributing Co.
New & Notable

Retail Merchandiser - March/April 2012