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Fred's Inc.
Type Public
Industry Discount, Variety store
Founded Coldwater, Mississippi (1947 (1947))
Headquarters Memphis, Tennessee, United States
Number of locations 639 stores and 284 pharmacies (2009)[1]
Area served Southeast and Midwest United States
Key people Bruce Efird CEO
Products Pharmacy, Garden Supplies, Snacks, Toys, Books, Food, Housewares, Videos, DVDs, Music
Revenue Increase$1.79 billion (2009)
Operating income Increase$26.31 million (2009)
Net income Increase$16.64 million (2009)
Employees 4,774[1]
This logo was used by Fred's until 2007, however, it still appears on store signs and on some of Fred's private label items.

Fred's, Inc. is a regional chain of discount retail stores, operating in the southeastern (and, to a lesser extent, midwestern) U.S.A.. It opened in 1947 and operates approximately 700 stores and 300 pharmacies in 15 states. It is headquartered in Memphis, Tennessee, U.S.A.[1]


The first Fred's store opened in Coldwater, Mississippi in 1947.

In 1953, Fred's moved its corporate headquarters to Memphis, Tennessee.

Fred's primarily competes against national, deep-discount chains Dollar General, Family Dollar, and Dollar Tree, and, against independently owned stores. In the past few years, it and other deep-discount retailers have taken some market share away from major discount chains like Walmart, as well. Most locations are in towns with populations of 15,000 or less.

Fred's has attempted to differentiate itself from its rivals by:

  • Operating a full-line pharmacy in approximately 1/3 of its stores
  • Operating a seasonal lawn and garden department
  • Selling tobacco products

As of the second quarter 2007 (10-Q), Fred's operated 701 stores (of which 24 are franchised; the company states on its website that it does not intend to add any more franchised stores) in 15 states. Of those, 294 contain a full-line pharmacy.[2]

In 2008, Fred's decided to close over 50 under-performing stores due to rising fuel costs and other economic issues. For example, several North Carolina locations were closed, leaving over a dozen stores in that state.


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