Fred’s Pharmacy appoints Chris Bodine, Peter Bocian and CEO Mike Bloom to its Board of Directors

– USA, TN – Fred’s Inc. (NASDAQ:FRED), today announced that it has appointed Christopher W. Bodine, Peter J. Bocian and Michael K. Bloom, Fred’s Pharmacy’s Chief Executive Officer, to its Board of Directors, effective immediately. In connection with today’s announcement, Michael J. Hayes, John R. Eisenman and Jerry A. Shore will retire from the Board and not stand for reelection at the 2017 Annual Meeting of Shareholders. Today’s announcement is part of a robust and ongoing reconstitution process in which the Board has been actively engaged, with the assistance of Spencer Stuart, a leading executive search firm, to add world-class, highly-qualified and experienced directors to the Board.

About Christopher W. Bodine

Chris Bodine brings to the Board his experience and expertise of successful leadership at CVS Caremark Corporation and in other industries.

Bodine is active in the pharmaceutical industry, having served on numerous boards and committees, including the Healthcare Leadership Council, RI Quality Institute, National Retail Federation, National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS), and the NACDS Pharmacy Affairs and Leadership Committees.

Bodine currently serves on the Board of Allergan PLC as a director, Chairman of the Nominating and Governance Committee and a Member of the Compensation Committee.

About Peter J. Bocian

Pete Bocian brings to the Board extensive executive expertise in the retail and technology sectors, with a track record of creating substantial value at a number of highly recognized global companies. He has significant financial, accounting and technology expertise.

Bocian has served in C-suite or executive level finance and administrative roles at NCR, Starbucks, Hewlett-Packard, JPMorgan Chase and Safeway, where he most recently served as Executive Vice President and CFO until 2015.

Most recently, Bocian was the Chief Financial Officer of Safeway, where the company delivered strong returns during his approximately two year tenure. Bocian played a leadership role in rationalizing the portfolio to create more value and in the eventual sale and merger with Albertsons.

About Michael K. Bloom, President and CEO

Mike Bloom, who was appointed CEO of Fred’s Pharmacy on August 29, 2016, brings to the Board more than 30 years of experience in small-box retail pharmacy, general merchandising, marketing, supply chain and store operations.

Prior to joining Fred’s, Bloom served as the President and Chief Operating Officer of Family Dollar Stores, Inc. and spent more than 20 years with CVS Caremark Corporation, holding a variety of positions with increasing responsibilities in merchandising, marketing, supply chain and store operations, and rising finally to Executive Vice President of Merchandising, Visual Merchandising, Marketing, Store Brand, Advertising and Supply Chain.

“We are pleased to welcome Chris, Pete and Mike to the Fred’s Pharmacy Board of Directors,” said Thomas H. Tashjian, Chairman of the Board. “This is an exciting time for Fred’s Pharmacy, as our highly experienced management team continues to execute on value-enhancing initiatives, including acquiring 865 Rite Aid stores, optimizing our store fleet and upgrading our technology infrastructure. Under Mike’s leadership, Fred’s has made significant progress towards the execution of our strategic vision, and we are thrilled that he can expand his role in the Company through today’s appointment. All of our new directors strengthen our Board by contributing their vast knowledge of the retail and healthcare industries, substantial leadership experience and financial expertise and strong track record of successfully integrating acquisitions. Moreover, our work is not done, as we continue to transform the Board to ensure we have the right experience and expertise to ensure the success of Fred’s Pharmacy’s exciting future.”

Tashjian continued, “I want to thank Jack, former CEO Jerry Shore, and especially former Chairman and CEO Mike Hayes, for their devoted contributions on the Fred’s Pharmacy Board. After many years of appreciated service to the Company, we wish them the best in the future.”

“I am delighted to be joining the Board, especially at such an important time for the Company,” said Bloom. “Since we assembled the management team in 2015, we have been executing on a comprehensive plan to optimize performance at the Company. We are also focused on completing the transformative acquisition of 865 Rite Aid stores. We believe our leadership team’s significant transaction experience will enable a smooth integration of the Rite Aid stores. I look forward to working with my fellow Board members to continue to grow the Company and make Fred’s Pharmacy the industry leader I know it can be.”

“I am honored to join the talented individuals on the Fred’s Pharmacy Board,” said Bocian. “With its focused mission and first-class management team, I am confident Fred’s Pharmacy has a bright future. Working with my fellow Board members, I look forward to making immediate contributions.”

“I am excited about joining the Fred’s Pharmacy Board and look forward to putting my skills and experiences in the industry to work on behalf of all of the Company’s investors,” said Bodine. “Pete, Mike and I will work closely with the other members of the Board to help set the Company’s strategy and advance the Company’s efforts to enhance value for Fred’s Pharmacy shareholders.”

About Fred’s Pharmacy

Tracing its history back to an original store in Coldwater, Mississippi, opened in 1947, today Fred’s Pharmacy is headquartered in Memphis, Tennessee, and operates 643 pharmacy and general merchandise stores and three specialty pharmacy-only locations, including 14 franchised Fred’s Pharmacy locations. With a unique store format and strategy that combines the best elements of a healthcare-focused drug store with a value-focused retailer, Fred’s Pharmacy stores offer more than 12,000 frequently purchased items that address the healthcare and everyday needs of its customers and patients. This includes nationally recognized brands, proprietary Fred’s Pharmacy label products, and a full range of value-priced selections. The company has two distribution centers, one in Memphis, Tennessee, and Dublin, Georgia.

As previously announced, on December 20, 2016, Fred’s Pharmacy announced that it signed an agreement with Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (NASDAQ: WBA) and Rite Aid Corporation (NYSE: RAD) to purchase 865 stores and certain assets related to store operations located across the eastern and western United States for $950 million in cash. Closing of the transaction is conditioned on the completion of Walgreens Boots Alliance’s proposed acquisition of Rite Aid, approval by the Federal Trade Commission, as well as customary regulatory approvals and closing conditions.

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