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Petco to Acquire Online Pet Product Retailer Drs. Foster and Smith


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Petco today announced it has entered into an agreement to acquire Drs. Foster and Smith, a leading veterinary-owned online pet supply company. This combination will unite one of the largest pet specialty retailers with one of the largest online pet retailers in the country.

Based in Rhinelander, Wisconsin, Drs. Foster and Smith are among the nation's foremost authorities on pet care and education, with a strong reputation for their scope of veterinary expertise on prescription medications and quality products for dogs, cats, fish, birds, reptiles, horses, pond life and small animals.

"This move underscores our commitment to nurturing the complete health and well-being of animals and further allows Petco to meet the diverse and expansive needs of pet parents," said Jim Myers, Petco CEO. "As pet lovers first and foremost, our values are perfectly aligned with Drs. Foster and Smith, and we're confident this new addition to our business will help us continue to offer the very best in products and services to pets and pet parents."

Petco provides customers with high-quality pet food, supplies and services, driven by the understanding that pet health goes beyond basic needs to include support of the physical, mental, social and emotional needs of pets. The acquisition will complement Petco's existing capabilities in pet health to include prescription services, including prescription diets, preventive care and a broad base of products created by licensed veterinarians.

Drs. Foster and Smith was founded in 1983 as a group of four veterinary clinics with the goal of helping pets live healthier, happier lives by providing the highest quality veterinary care available. Dr. Race Foster, Dr. Rory Foster and Dr. Marty Smith's animal hospitals in Northern Wisconsin were the first in the nation to offer free rabies vaccinations and free spay/neutering services.

Since its beginnings, Drs. Foster and Smith has developed a sterling reputation on the strengths of its top-level customer service, consumer education and competitive pricing, evidenced by tremendous customer loyalty and satisfaction. In 2003, the company began offering a full-service pharmacy that enables customers to fill prescriptions online and by mail order. The acquisition includes both Drs. Foster and Smith's prescription services as well as its popular branded products, including joint care supplements, dog and cat foods, dog beds, cat furniture, horse supplies, equine equipment and other pet care essentials.

At our founding, our intent with Drs. Foster and Smith was to provide pet owners with veterinary advice and quality pet supplies at affordable prices," said Race Foster, DVM, and Co-Founder of Drs. Foster and Smith. "We believe Petco shares those same values, and we look forward to building on our original mission."

The acquisition, in which Drs. Foster and Smith are represented by Falls River Group, is expected to be completed by early 2015 and is subject to customary closing conditions, including receipt of regulatory approvals. the terms of the deal are not being disclosed.


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DFS did put themselves on the market back in October so it shouldn't be too surprising that someone made a move on them.

I don't have a lot of faith they can keep the brand operating anywhere close to what it is now. Petco could have carried all the supplies and the livestock of DFS for the past 10 years, no reason to assume they can do it through some assimilated DFS when they couldn't or wouldn't do it themselves. I don't really purchase supplies from them so no really relevant to my concerns, but I'm glad we have good LFS's here. Live aquaria is an irreplaceable vendor for people in rural areas as well as carrying a huge selection good quality livestock, especially in the diver's den. I also wonder what's going to happen to DFS's aquaculture and mariculture operations which are very large.

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The only reason Petco would have to acquire a business that sells online goods like they do, is to gain entry into the livestock sales market. If this were the case then the live sales will likely stay the same, however the dry goods service will fluctuate. Drs offers a greater variety of supplies at a price less than similar products at Petco. Eliminating competition would likely benefit them, but will also likely lose regular customers if the product lines shifts to brands already endorsed at Petco.

I have almost exclusively been shopping through Drs. Foster and Smith for 20 years, but I will likely take my business to Pet Solutions. The products at Petco neither match the sophistication we require in this hobby nor match the price point people are willing to pay for inelastic goods. Pet Solutions is similar enough to Drs. to be an adequate replacement. I would shop through BRS if their free shipping threshold were lower.

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" Greetings,

I would like to take a moment to respond and address some concerns posted in this thread.

Dr. Race Foster and Dr. Marty Smith have worked incredibly hard over the last 31 years, to build an incredibly successful business, which revolves around education, pet heath, and responsible pet ownership. The Petco mission is elevating the lives of animals and enhancing the connection people have with their pets, with a commitment to the highest standards of social responsibility, while continually striving to make things better for pets, people and the planet. Understanding each company’s mission and goals are very similar, we feel this partnership and synergy is going to be beneficial to animals, pet owners, and aquarium hobbyists and enthusiasts alike.

I can assure everyone, my personal mission as the LiveAquaria Director is to take LiveAquaria.com to an even higher level than ever before. The continued expansion of our Aquaculture Coral and Marine Life facility in Rhinelander Wisconsin, home of the LiveAquaria.com Divers Den®, allows us to offer an even greater assortment of quality aquatic life shipped direct to your door.

Rest assured, Dr. Race Foster and I are not going anywhere, and will continue to operate Drs. Foster and Smith pet supplies and LiveAquaria.com as it's business as usual. Both Race and I are incredibly excited for the future and what lies ahead.

Kindest Regards,

Kevin Kohen

Director of LiveAquaria

Drs. Foster and Smith

"Ignore any fails in my copying from my phone

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