(I) Background Information
Incorporation and Brief history of Superdrug
In this section, the history of Superdrug will be highlighted briefly in three separate periods.
(a) 1961 - 1987
Beginning in 1961, Superdrug was established as a toiletry retailing business by Ronald and Peter Goldstein who both had experiences of several years in the grocery retailing industry. In 1964, Superdrug was embodied as Leading Supermarkets Limited and later in 1966 officially started to use its present name until now. In 1966, the first store was opened in Putney, London. Prior to 1968 when the first distribution warehouse of Superdrug in Wimbledon came into its possession, delivery by suppliers was made directly to stores, i.e. direct store delivery (DSD), which is an alternative distribution model to centralized distribution, had been practiced by suppliers.
The acquisition of Elgee Drugstores which was operating a chain of five stores by Superdrug in 1972 created a rapid growth expansion of the chain up to 40 stores around early 1970s. In 1973, a computerized system for stock control came into use. Over the next decade, the chain expansion reached as many as 143 outlets with the opening of the first store in Wrexham, Wales in 1980 as well as the opening of the current head office complex in Croydon took place. Also with the record sales following on, the continuing success of the Goldstein brothers’ business methods gave rise to the extension of head office and expansion of stores and the increasing profits arising out of own-label brands. Moreover, semi-automated distribution centre was completed in Pontefract and an in-house Design Studio and Quality Assurance Department were established in 1985. In the same year, Superdrug opened its first store in Scotland bringing the store total to 253. Later the year 1987 saw a takeover when Superdrug had an agreement with Woolworth Holdings, which later changed its name to Kingfisher Plc, to sell all the shares it possessed.
(b) 1988 – 2001
In addition to this, Superdrug’s acquisitions of Tip-Top, a northern-based drugstore chain and Sharedrug, a southern based chain in 1988 aggressively speeded up the store chain expansion and accelerated the trading frequency. In 1989, the Medicare chain of drugstores of about 86 was merged into the Superdrug portfolio. 1991 saw the first Superdrug store in Northern Ireland and later the development of a chain of nine stores in the region. The first two perfumeries were opened later in the same year. During the years until 2001, Superdrug continued to grow over the next years with having many more perfumeries opened up, number of in-store pharmacies increasing, thousands of own brand products being launched, doing promotional activities and rebranding. However, in 2001, due to the elevating...