Longs Drugs looking at second Hawaii DC
Walnut Creek-based retailer Longs Drug Stores Corp. is again considering building a second Hawaiian distribution center as it advanced plans to increase its presence on the islands.
Facing increasing competition from rival Walgreen, which opened its first store on Oahu Nov. 1, Longs has hired architecture firm Leo A. Daly and is exploring different island locations for the center.
Deerfield, Ill.-based Walgreens, which operates more than 6,000 stores nationwide, dwarfs the 509-store chain owned by Longs, but until this month had not entered the Hawaiian market.
Longs, which has had a presence in the islands since 1954, supplies its 36 stores in Hawaii from a 48,000-square-foot distribution center near Honolulu International Airport. The retailer looked at building a second distribution center in Hawaii several years ago, but decided at the time not to proceed.
'We’ve been down this path before, obviously since the mid-1990s, but now we’re revisiting it again ' and we’re looking at what all our options are,' Longs spokeswoman Phyllis Proffer told the Star-Bulletin.
Longs' reconsideration of a second Hawaiian distribution center is part of an overall effort to improve efficiency and productivity in the firm's supply chain as it ramps up for a five-year growth plan that will add nearly 200 stores to Hawaii, California and Nevada.
Walgreens plans to open at least four more stores in Hawaii over the next year with an ultimate plan to have 25 to 30 on the islands.