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DEALS

Report: Fred’s could receive cash infusion to help purchase Rite Aid stores

BY CSA STAFF

Fred’s plan to purchase at least 865 divested Rite Aid stores may be getting a step closer to becoming a reality.

More than one prominent investor has recently approached Fred’s Pharmacy, a regional drug chain that operates 601 locations in 16 states. The investors' goal is to help Fred's pay for and successfully operate the 865 divested Rite Aid stores it pledged to purchase for $950 million, according to the New York Post.

The FTC could require more Rite Aid stores be divested to give its blessing to the merger.

Coinciding with reporting its 2016 fourth-quarter and full-year results on Thursday, April 6, the company said, “Fred’s Pharmacy remains committed to purchasing additional assets, including up to 1,200 Rite Aid stores, to the extent necessary to obtain the FTC’s approval of the transaction.”

Fred’s added the addition of Rite Aid stores would be highly beneficial to the company. “The proposed acquisition of the stores, which are based in highly attractive markets, is a transformative event that will add substantial scale to the company and transform Fred’s Pharmacy, the largest regional pharmacy player, into an even stronger competitor and the third-largest drugstore chain in the nation,” the company said. “The transaction will accelerate the Company’s healthcare growth strategy, generating considerable benefits for our customers, patients, payers, supplier partners, team members and shareholders.”

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REAL ESTATE

Mexican shoppers boost Laredo outlet opening

BY CSA STAFF

President Trump’s real estate compadres at CBL and Horizon Group are no doubt hoping he holds off on building that wall.

The companies opened The Outlet Shoppes in the Texas border town of Laredo this week and report experiencing high traffic and sales volumes, in large part due to Mexica shoppers flocking to the site.

“We always knew the center would be strong with its position close to the major bridges to Mexico and its proximity to Monterrey, but we never anticipated the volume of shoppers we experienced our first weekend,” said Gary Skoien, president and CEO of Horizon Group.

Added CBL chief executive Steven Lebovitz: “We have a strong presence in Laredo as the owner of Mall del Norte and we are excited to expand our footprint in this dynamic and growing market.”

Tenants at the 358,000-sq.-ft. center include Nike, A’gaci, Michael Kors, Very Bradley, Puma, Columbia, and Sunglass Hut. Looking toward summer openings are Banana Republic, GAP, H&M, and Old Navy.

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FINANCE

Report: Eastern Outfitters LLC seeks speedy store closures

BY CSA STAFF

Eastern Outfitters could soon be adding to the surge of store closings among U.S. retailers.

The company won a court order on Thursday, April 6, for an expedited hearing on its plan to shutter 48 of the 86 stores its operates under the Bob's Stores and Eastern Mountain Sports brands, according to Reuters.

Eastern Outfitters will make its case on April 13 in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware, where it filed for Chapter 11 protection in February.

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