Ritzman buys five Mast Pharmacy stores

WADSWORTH, Ohio — Ritzman Pharmacies Inc. has purchased five-store Mast ­Pharmacy. Ritzman picked up outlets in Sugarcreek, Berlin, Millersburg, Shreve and Wooster, Ohio, giving it a total of 25 full-service pharmacies in northeastern and central Ohio. The Ritzman locations include 11 pharmacies in Buehler’s Fresh Foods Market supermarkets. Ritzman acquired the Buehler’s in-store pharmacies in

Jean Coutu sets stock buyback, dividend

LONGUEUIL, Quebec — The Jean Coutu Group has announced a share repurchase plan and a special onetime dividend to return as much as $502 million (Canadian) in cash to ­shareholders. The share repurchase offer covers 22 million Class A subordinate voting shares without par value, at a price of $18.50 per share. The onetime dividend

Duane Reade taps Facebook

NEW YORK — Duane Reade is conducting a Halloween-themed social media marketing campaign to promote its store brand hosiery products. The “Boo-tiful Legs” contest calls for entrants to upload original photos of themselves wearing Duane Reade brand hosiery via a dedicated Facebook page. The contest will run through November 3. Ten first prize winners will

Rebranding of Diplomat reflects its broader scope

FLINT, Mich. — Diplomat Specialty Pharmacy has rolled out a new brand identity that executives say helps take the company in a new direction. “In our desire to fully serve our patients and our industry, we have become more,” co-founder and chief executive Phil Hagerman says about the effort that will see the company shorten

Rexall aims to help prevent the flu

MISSISSAUGA, Ontario — Rexall Pharma Plus is once again making it convenient for Canadians to receive flu shots, offering vaccinations at all of its stores. People can get the shots at any Rexall store at any time, with no appointment needed. “Pharmacies are the face of neighborhood health care that can provide quick and convenient

Walgreens offers financial services

DEERFIELD, Ill. — Walgreen Co. is introducing a suite of financial services called Balance Financial that are integrated with its Balance Rewards customer loyalty card. The program has been designed to provide low-cost financial services to customers, including those without traditional bank ­accounts. The Balance Financial services are built around a new Balance Financial Prepaid

Dramatic changes energize Walgreens

Not often does change disrupt the orderly nature of things in chain drug retailing to the degree that the recent personnel shifts at Walgreens have altered both the personnel roster at that drug chain and the priorities of the many constituencies with which the retailer interacts. Earlier this month Walgreens confirmed a series of high-level

Chains need to go beyond multichannel, omnichannel

Many retailers today are immersed in building multichannel capabilities. The multichannel wave has led to many good initiatives, making it easier for customers to interact with retailers across distinct channels, including fast-growing mobile channels. For example, A.T. Kearney’s Future Role of Stores research indicates that although 92% of retail sales still occur via traditional channels,

Health insurance exchanges get off to rocky start

NEW YORK — NEW YORK — The much-anticipated debut of the enrollment period for health insurance exchanges saw millions of Americans overwhelm the websites set up to let them get coverage. Proponents of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) health reform law say the sheer number of people who turned to the sites on the first

Pharmacies are helping patients cope with ACA

NEW YORK — The kickoff of the Affordable Care Act’s open enrollment period has kept community pharmacy chains busy. Large retailers such as Walmart, CVS Caremark Corp., Walgreen Co. and Rite Aid Corp. as well as such regional drug chains as Navarro Discount Pharmacy are promoting health care coverage in many of their stores. “We

Washington gridlock casts shadow

WASHINGTON — The economy faced a greater threat from hitting the debt ceiling than from a government shutdown, experts said this month. Unless the federal borrowing limit was raised by October 17, the country faced a default on its loans and an ensuing global crisis. The scenario would also mean no cash for Social Security

Industry groups back Rx legislation

WASHINGTON — Community pharmacy advocates have thrown their support behind a congressional plan to reform the nation’s pharmaceutical supply chain and impose tighter regulations on pharmacy compounding. The heads of the National Association of Chain Drug Stores, National Community Pharmacists Association and Healthcare Distribution Management Association all wrote letters to Senate and House of Representatives

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