Top Women In Store Brands 2022: Andrea Collaro, Walgreens

Andrea Collaro's leadership at Walgreens has led to continued product development for the pharmacy chain, earning her the TWISB Innovation honor.
Zachary Russell
Associate Editor
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Andrea Collaro Walgreens
Andrea Collaro

Earning the Innovation award this year is Andrea Collaro, senior director of product development & brand management at Walgreens. In this role, Collaro oversees the pharmacy chain’s own brand healthcare products, sold at nearly 9,000 locations across the U.S., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Collaro leads the entire Walgreens owned brand division, spanning 12 brands and over 4,500 products, and is responsible for everything from product development to brand management. She spearheads product development across four divisions of insights-driven, consumer-led healthcare products including health & wellness, beauty, personal care, grocery & household, and seasonal/general merchandise.

After working with her team of 37 product development managers and strategists, Collaro collaborates with the digital team to ensure the products reach the right consumers. Praised by colleagues as being a skilled strategist, she is also a leader that promotes collaboration and inspires diversity of thought.

“Owned brands can draw consumers to a retailer when they’ve established themselves as a great value offer with quality and often innovative products, which is something we’ve done during my tenure at Walgreens,” said Collaro. “Our Walgreens brand health and wellness products in particular play an important role in the lives of our consumers.”

Collaro earned her PharmD from UIC College of Pharmacy and has a strong professional background rooted in healthcare with positions spanning pharmacy operations and procurement to merchandising, all within Walgreens. After ten years in the field speaking to patients every day as a Walgreens pharmacist, her commitment to care and vast knowledge of consumer needs combined with a deep understanding of health and wellness has contributed to her success and achievements.

Private brand innovations rolled out by Walgreens this year include a pulse oximeter with respiratory rate function developed in the middle of COVID that helped patients assess declining lung function, along with products for pain management such as red light therapy, vibration therapy and an acupressure mat.

“The key is not only providing value to the consumer but developing products that meet their needs, therefore establishing trust and loyalty,” she said. “Our owned brand products are proudly a huge driver of customer loyalty to Walgreens and we’ll continue to capitalize on this evolving consumer mindset as we seek to be the first choice health and wellness brand. I hope to continue to spearhead our owned brands as a trusted offering for our consumers, not only delivering value but also innovative solutions where it matters most"