News

Drugstore chain Duane Reade testing iBeacon technology

BY Marianne Wilson

New York — The Duane Reade drugstore chain has launched an iBeacon pilot in several stores in the New York area. The test was announced by Tim McCauley, senior director of mobile commerce at Walgreens, parent company of Duane Reade, during a presentation at the Mcommerce Summit in New York City.

“In Duane Reade, we now have iBeacon in our Duane Reade app, and we have a ten-store pilot in this market going on right now,” said McCauley

The iBeacon technology pilot is part of an in-store mobile coupon initiative at Duane Reade that lets shoppers digitally clip coupons and redeem them via a bar code on a smartphone.

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REAL ESTATE

Tile Shop plans 20 new stores in 2014

BY Dan Berthiaume

Minneapolis – The Tile Shop will expand its presence by 20 stores to 108 locations by the end of 2014, and also remodel 15 to 20 locations.

“Through our store layout and sales associates, who offer project planning, design counsel, tile recommendations and installation guidance, we are able to meaningfully connect with our customers and meet their individual project needs with affordable tile and natural stone products, building a foundation for an ongoing relationship,” said Carl Randazzo, senior VP of retail for The Tile Shop.

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FINANCE

Pharmacy sales boost CVS profit in Q1

BY Dan Berthiaume

Woonsocket, R.I. – Net income at CVS Caremark Corp. increased 18.3% to $1.1 billion in the first quarter of fiscal 2014, compared with approximately $1 billion a year earlier. Pharmacy services and retail pharmacy segments both benefited from the impact of increased generic drugs dispensed and slower growth in expenses.

Net income was also positively impacted by rebate improvement in the pharmacy services segment and an increase in front store gross margins in the retail pharmacy segment. In addition, net revenues performed well, rising 6.3% to $32.69 billion from $30.75 billion. The increase was primarily driven by growth in CVS’ specialty pharmacy business, as well as drug cost inflation, new customers and new products.

Same-store sales grew 1.4%. CVS said same-store sales growth was slowed by a weaker-than-expected flu season and severe weather in much of the U.S.

“We once again posted a very strong quarter, with solid results across the enterprise,” said Larry Merlo, president and CEO of CVS. “I’m particularly pleased with the exceptional growth in the PBM, especially the growth of the specialty pharmacy business. Additionally, with the substantial amount of free cash we generated during the quarter, we remain confident in our ability to achieve our 2014 goals.”

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