London Drugs

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London Drugs Limited
Industry Retail
Founded 1945
Headquarters Richmond, British Columbia
Area served
British Columbia
Products Electronics, grocery, pharmaceuticals, health/beauty, photofinishing, insurance services, furniture, toys, and housewares.
London Drugs Store 85 in Abbotsford, British Columbia
Photography section of a London Drugs Store 85 in Abbotsford, BC

London Drugs is a chain of Canadian retail stores with headquarters in Richmond, British Columbia. Its primary focus is on pharmaceuticals, electronics, housewares and cosmetics, with a limited selection of grocery items. As of June 2014, the chain had 78 stores in the provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and British Columbia.[1]


London Drugs was founded in 1945 as a small drugstore in Vancouver, British Columbia by Sam Bass. The first location at 800 Main Street, Vancouver, was named after London, England, the home of Canada's King, George VI.

In 1968, London Drugs was sold to Daylin Corporation. The next year, Daylin ran into financial difficulties in the US branch of its business, and decided to put London Drugs up for sale. In 1976 the business was acquired by the H.Y. Louie Group under the direction of President Tong Louie.

Tong Louie expanded the company within BC and, for the first time, beyond the provincial border into Alberta with the first Edmonton location in 1976. In the next ten years, London Drugs tripled its number of stores.

During this growth, the company also began increasing the types of products available in stores. Small kitchen appliances, high end cosmetics and high quality photo equipment quickly became staple items lining the shelves.

In 1981, London Drugs expanded into another non-traditional drugstore category by installing its first One-Hour Photofinishing labs. The introduction of photofinishing labs into the store and the one-hour-photo revolution paved the way for London Drugs’ introduction of a computer department in 1983.

In the 1990s, London Drugs was established as a computer retailer, a photofinishing juggernaut, and a great place to buy blenders and cameras with the heart of the business remaining in pharmacy.

In 2000, the pharmacy lead the way into the new millennium. A unique approach to healthcare partnership included private consultation desks, a new department layout, and use of technology.

In 2004, the St. Vital Shopping Centre in Winnipeg becomes the new home to London Drugs’ first Manitoba store.

Today, London Drugs has stores in more than 35 major markets throughout British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba. The pharmacy is still the heart of the business, but today, London Drugs also offers a full service computer department, cosmetics ranging from lip gloss to high-end face creams, furniture, cameras, high quality photo finishing, cordless phones and plasma televisions. More people buy their small appliances in London Drugs than any other place in Western Canada. All told, London Drugs serves more than 45 million customers each year.


A private company, London Drugs management consists of President and CEO Brandt C. Louie, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Clint Mahlman, Chief Financial Officer Laird Miller, Vice President Pharmacy and Cosmetics John Tse, General Manager of IT Nick Curalli, General Counsel Christine MacLean, Director of Real Estate Donna Figueira and Vice President General Merchandise, Insurance Services and Postal Outlets Rob Felix. It is entirely Canadian-owned.


London Drugs markets its own brand of products and services under the following labels.

Name Type of Product
London Drugs Health Products, Furniture, Home ware, Food
London Naturals Vitamins and Medicines
London Home Furniture, Dinnerware
Certified Data[2] Computers
London Premiere Cosmetic Products
London Plantation Nuts
LD Insurance[3] Insurance Services
London Spa[4] Spa Services
CustomWorks[5] Entertainment System Installation


Of the chain's 78 stores, 51 are located in British Columbia, most in Greater Vancouver. In Alberta there are 22 stores, including seven in the Edmonton Capital Region, eight in the Calgary Region, and four in other communities. In Saskatchewan, 2 in Regina, 2 in Saskatoon and 1 in Winnipeg, Manitoba.


In 2014, a member of London Drugs staff falsely accused Andy Fiore, an award-winning documentary filmmaker with paranoid schizophrenia, of theft; the incident led to unfavourable media coverage and threats of litigation.[6][7]


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