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CVS purchases infusion services provider

BY Dan Berthiaume

Woonsocket, R.I. – CVS Caremark has entered into an agreement to acquire Coram LLC, the specialty infusion services and enteral nutrition business unit of Apria Healthcare Group Inc. for approximately $2.1 billion. Coram provides infusion therapies and nutrition services to more than 20,000 patients each month, primarily through home infusion as well as a national network of more than 85 locations, including more than 65 ambulatory infusion suites.

"Bringing together CVS Caremark’s unique range of specialty pharmacy services with Coram’s infusion capabilities will expand our competitive offerings in the specialty arena,” said Jon Roberts, president of CVS Caremark Pharmacy Services. “Infusion will be a valuable component of our broad specialty pharmacy offering going forward. Our comprehensive services will enable us to streamline care management for patients as well as their physicians, leading to better health outcomes while avoiding unnecessary costs.”

Barclays served as CVS’ financial advisor on the transaction, while Sullivan and Cromwell LLP served as legal advisor and Dechert LLP served as legal advisor from an anti-trust perspective.

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GNC authorizes share repurchase; increases term loan

BY Dan Berthiaume

Pittsburgh – The board of directors of GNC Holdings has authorized a multi-year program to repurchase up to an aggregate $500 million of the company’s Class A common stock. The authorization is effective immediately. The GNC may finance any repurchases with cash, potential financing transactions, or a combination of the foregoing.

All previous share repurchase authorizations have been completed. The company also increased its term loan to $1.35 billion. Under the new terms, the maturity date was extended by one year to March 2019 and repriced. In connection with this repricing, lenders will receive a 1% premium if the company consummates a "repricing transaction" within six months.

The continuation of our share repurchase program and evolution of our capital structure reaffirms our commitment to consistently return capital to shareholders, and reinforces our confidence in the fundamental strength and long-term prospects of the business," said Joe Fortunato, chairman, president and CEO of GNC.

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Shoptology bolsters digital business

BY CSA STAFF

Independent agency network Project: WorldWide and its shopper engagement agency, Shoptology, have named Ken Madden as head of digital at Shoptology. Madden will report directly to Shoptology CEO Charlie Anderson.

Charged with overseeing Shoptology’s digital, social and mobile strategy teams, Madden will play a lead role in the agency’s ongoing capability development, digital thought leadership and e-commerce practice, working across all of Shoptology’s clients, including Pepsi-Lipton partnership, Blistex’s Stridex, Lifeway Christian Resources and DSM.

“Investing in top digital leadership has never been more important,” said Anderson. “Madden is an incredible talent that has dedicated his career to the creative use of technology and data driven insights to solve client problems — his hire not only supports our vision for Shopper Marketing 2.0, but also signifies a pivotal point in our industry that is focused on digital, shopper engagement.”

Madden joins Shoptology from Geometry Global, where he served as EVP, head of digital, North America. Prior, he worked at OgilvyAction, serving in various leadership roles throughout the course of his tenure focusing on and developing data and analytics, research, digital strategy, technology and e-commerce capabilities.

“We are at a decisive point in time where our industry is rapidly changing — the retail experience is completely transforming and shopper marketing for brands is about to be a different game altogether. We have a unique and rare opportunity to re-envision the shopper agency of the future and I have no doubt that Shoptology has the team and focus to get it right,” said Madden. “This new role is going to allow me to use the full breadth of my experience in technology, data and analytics, digital marketing and strategy, and I can’t wait to get in and start building.”

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