CINCINNATI, Ohio and NASHVILLE, Tennessee, May 29, 2008 - The Kroger Co. (NYSE: KR) and The Little Clinic LLC today announced a partnership aimed at bringing walk-in medical clinics and consumer health solutions to stores across the country. Kroger has made a significant investment in The Little Clinic that will support a substantial clinic rollout. Financial terms of the investment were not disclosed. The Little Clinic currently operates 26 walk-in medical clinics inside Kroger's family of stores.
Molly F. Ashby, founder and CEO of Solera Capital, and Chairman of The Little Clinic, said: "We welcome Kroger as a shareholder and partner in building a leader in consumer healthcare. We share a commitment to deliver innovative, quality, affordable healthcare to consumers across the country." Solera Capital is a private equity firm that acquired The Little Clinic's predecessor in 2005.
Donald Becker, Executive Vice President of Merchandising for Kroger, said: "More and more, our customers are becoming proactive about managing their health and wellness. Millions of customers already rely on the professional expert counsel our Pharmacists provide. Our partnership with The Little Clinic is one more way Kroger makes it easy for customers to take advantage of healthcare options inside our family of stores."
The Little Clinic locations are staffed with licensed and Board Certified Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioners (ARNPs) and Certified Physician Assistants. They are authorized to diagnose, treat and write prescriptions for common illnesses such as flu, bronchitis, respiratory, sinus and ear infections, as well as for minor injuries. The clinics also provide services such as physicals, back-to-school and sports exams, screenings and a number of vaccinations. Additional benefits of The Little Clinic sites include:
- No appointment, little or no waiting time
- Affordable -- covered by many insurance plans
- Care for the whole family -- 12 months of age and up
- Open days, nights and weekends
- Professionals who care
"The Little Clinic is the perfect complement to family practitioners when you're on the go, or need medical attention after hours," said John Grzybowski, President and Chief Operating Officer of The Little Clinic. "Kroger customers who visit our clinics are impressed by the attentiveness and expertise of our medical professionals, and we are excited to grow our company by offering services in additional stores."
About The Little Clinic:
Founded in 2003 and headquartered in Nashville, Tenn., The Little Clinic is a pioneer in customer-focused healthcare with a mission to provide convenient, affordable healthcare and wellness education. The Little Clinic healthcare centers are currently located in Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Ohio, Michigan and Tennessee. The Little Clinic and all of its affiliate health care providers operate in accordance with all the applicable state and federal laws and medical standards. For more information, please visit www.thelittleclinic.com.
Kroger, one of the nation's largest retail grocery chains, is honored to celebrate its 125th anniversary in 2008. The Company's more than 320,000 associates serve customers in 2,486 supermarkets and multi-department stores in 31 states under two dozen local banners including Kroger, Ralphs, Fred Meyer, Food 4 Less, Fry's, King Soopers, Scott's, Smith's, Dillons, QFC and City Market. Kroger associates also serve customers in 782 convenience stores, 394 fine jewelry stores and 720 supermarket fuel centers the Company operates. In addition, the Company operates 42 food processing plants in the U.S. Headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, Kroger focuses its charitable efforts on supporting hunger relief, health and wellness initiatives, and local schools and grassroots organizations in the communities it serves. For more information about the Company, please visit our website at www.kroger.com.