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Rite Aid Credits Wellness+ Loyalty Program for Recent Success

Rite Aid increased sales and narrowed losses as its Wellness+ loyalty card program continued to grow and its new Wellness store format saw continued expansion.

The company reported sales of $6.3 billion, a 1.8% increase over second quarter 2011’s $6.2 billion. Losses were $92.3 million, compared with $197 million in the same period last year.

The Wellness+ program had 44 million members, compared with nearly 40 million in first quarter 2012. In a conference call with investors, president and CEO John Standley said Wellness+ silver members had basket sizes 55% larger than nonmembers, while gold members had basket sizes 128% larger.

Overall, members accounted for 69% of front-end sales and 66% of script count, while almost 90% of members shopped both sides of the store, and 50% visited the stores each week.

“We continue to attract new customers with the program, and we watch their behavior as they come in,” Standley said.

Next week, the chain plans to introduce Wellness+ Diabetes, a collaboration with WebMD and the first Wellness+ program extension. The program will provide members with free lifestyle management tools and other resources, Standley said.