More than one reader has contacted this editor about Pharmaca, the pharmacy, which also offers natural supplements, cards and gifts that is located at the corner of Sunset Boulevard and La Cruz Drive.
“I was just in Pharmaca and the shelves are almost empty,” the reader wrote. “I had heard a rumor that the landlord had substantially raised their rent and they might not be able to stay in the Palisades. There were only two people working in the store (a couple of more in the Pharmacy) but there was no one to ask what was happening. I sure hope they aren’t leaving the Palisades.”
Circling the News heard a similar rumor last week and contacted Pharmaca’s Palisades landlord, who responded, “Pharmaca/Medly have a lease and I have not heard anything regarding closing.”
The problem is not the landlord, but rather centers around Medly, a Brooklyn, N.Y.-based digital pharmacy, that acquired the Boulder-based Pharmaca in the third quarter of 2021.
Pharmaca, based in Colorado, had 28 stores. With that acquisition, Medly had expanded to almost 30 markets. It had earned a reputation as offering free same-day prescription delivery to customers in its stores in New York City; New Jersey; Philadelphia; Miami; Baltimore; Raleigh, North Carolina; Atlanta; and Fort Worth and San Antonio, Texas.
But, according to Business Insider, Medly filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on December 9.
The company’s assets were estimated to be $1 to $10 million and its estimated liabilities $100 to $500 million.
The company had laid off 293 employees or 16 percent of its workforce on August 4.
After reducing its staff, Medly closed many of its pharmacies without notifying patients, according to a December 10 Business News story (“Medly Files for Bankruptcy as Once-Hot Pharmacy Startup Crumbles Due to Mounting Losses”).
Medly’s CEO and founder Marg Patel stepped down from the company in September.
Also, in September 12 former employees filed a federal class-action lawsuit against Medly, alleging they weren’t given adequate notice or reason for being laid off.
According to the case, the pharmacy dismissed, without notice, an estimated 1,100 of its 1,850 full-time employees.
According to Law360, (“Medly Health Files for C.11 With Plans to Sell 22 stores”) the company is seeking a Delaware bankruptcy court’s permission to sell its 22-store Pharmaca business line.