FINANCE

Charlotte Russe Extends Offer Deadline

BY CSA STAFF

San Diego Charlotte Russe Holding Inc. said Wednesday its board approved an extension of the expiration date of its modified “Dutch Auction” tender offer.

The tender offer was originally set to expire at 5 p.m. on Thursday and will now expire at 5 p.m. on April 2, the company said.

The company said that given the timing of the Easter holiday and spring-break periods, the board believed it was appropriate to extend the date to after the company’s fiscal quarter which ends March 29.

Charlotte Russe said that as of March 17, 2,845 shares of the company’s stock had been tendered and deposited pursuant to the tender offer.

The company is offering to buy up to 4 million shares in the offer.

A modified “Dutch Auction” offer allows shareholders to indicate how many shares and at what price within the company’s specified range they wish to tender.

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Staples makes offer to buy Corporate Express

BY CSA STAFF

FRAMINGHAM, Mass. Staples today confirmed that it will make a public offer for all the outstanding ordinary shares and American depositary shares issued by Corporate Express for a price of EUR 7.25 ($8.63) per ordinary share and ADS.

“While we continue to be disappointed that Corporate Express’ Executive and Supervisory Boards have not entered into a negotiation with us about the transaction, we remain very enthusiastic about a combination between the two companies,” said Ron Sargent, Staples chairman and ceo. “Based on public information, Staples firmly believes its proposal is the most valuable option available to Corporate Express’ shareholders and will deliver significant benefits for customers and employees.”

Staples expects to submit a request for approval of the offer memorandum in respect of the offer to the Netherlands Authority for the Financial Markets before May 13, which is the date by which under Dutch law a request for approval must be submitted to the AFM. In addition, Staples plans to make all necessary competition regulatory filings prior to May 13.

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CVS settles ranitidine dispension suit

BY CSA STAFF

WOONSOCKET, R.I. CVS Caremark today said that it has reached a settlement agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice and a number of state Attorneys General to resolve an investigation into the practice of its CVS/pharmacy retail pharmacies of dispensing the generic drug ranitidine in capsule rather than tablet form to Medicaid recipients.

CVS Caremark has denied any wrongful conduct and said that that for many years it has dispensed the capsule from of rantidine to all patients, not just Medicaid recipients, due to the fact that the acquisition cost of capsules was lower than the cost of tablets. According to the company, both forms contain the same active ingredients.

According to CVS Caremark, the government alleged that the practice of dispensing capsules instead of tablets was motivated by a desire to increase Medicaid reimbursement. The company has expressly denied this allegation.

The settlement calls for payment by the company of $36.7 million, plus approximately $800,000 in investigative costs and other fees. The company said this will not affect its 2008 earnings results.

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