Efird continued, "We look forward to the new year and our expansion in specialty pharmacy and clinical services, an acceleration of pharmacy acquisitions, our expansion of new auto and hardware product initiatives, and a roll out of new concepts, such as the smaller drug and dollar store. Considering Fred's growth prospects in the rapidly changing pharmacy industry, along with our new general merchandise initiatives, we believe there are significant opportunities to drive higher sales and profits in 2013."
During January, Fred's opened two new stores, closed one store and closed one Xpress pharmacy. For the year, Fred's added a net total of 12 new locations, consisting of 20 new stores and 6 new Xpress pharmacies, which was offset by the closing of 14 company-owned stores. The Company also opened 24 new pharmacies in 2012 and closed 3, for a net addition of 21 pharmacies during the year.
Fred's, Inc. operates 712 discount general merchandise stores, including 21 franchised Fred's stores, in the southeastern United States. For more information about the Company, visit Fred's website at www.fredsinc.com.
Comments in this news release that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, general economic trends, changes in consumer demand or purchase patterns, delays or interruptions in the flow of merchandise between the Company's distribution centers and its stores or between the Company's suppliers and same, a disruption in the Company's data processing services, costs and delays in acquiring or developing new store sites, and other contingencies discussed in the Company's Securities and Exchange Commission filings. Fred's undertakes no obligation to release revisions to these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof or to reflect the occurrence of unforeseen events, except as required to be reported under the rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission.
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