OPERATIONS

Wal-Mart Cuts Premiums, Adds $4 Generics

BY CSA STAFF

Bentonville, Ark., Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is adding $4 generic drugs to its health-insurance plans and offering lower premiums and deductibles, according to the Associated Press.

Wal-Mart said the new 2008 plan will add more than 2,400 generic prescriptions at $4 each. The current plan offers fewer than 20 generic drugs for a co-pay of $3.

It will also offer premiums on its lowest-priced Value Plan as little as $8 a month nationwide, from $24 a month, currently. The new lowest-premium plan for individuals has a deductible of $2,000 a year but no maximum on coverage and an upfront credit of $100 before the deductible kicks in.

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OfficeMax names Sam Martin new evp and coo

BY CSA STAFF

OfficeMax announced the appointment of Sam Martin to the roles of evp and coo, effective Sept. 17. Martin will be responsible for all areas of retail, contract and supply chain for the company.

Martin most recently served as senior vp of operations of Wild Oats Markets. Prior to Wild Oats, Martin served as senior vp of supply chain for ShopKo Stores Inc. after having joined the company in 2003 as vp of distribution and transportation. From 1998 to 2003, Martin was regional vp, Western region, and gm for Toys “R” Us, and before that, he served in a variety of operational roles in his 24 years with Fred Meyer Stores.

“I am extremely excited to have Sam [Martin] join our executive leadership team,” said Sam Duncan, chairman and ceo of OfficeMax. “Sam has an exemplary track record in delivering strong operating performance. We welcome his wealth of knowledge as we pursue our near- and long-term goals.”

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Staples adds new board members

BY CSA STAFF

Framingham, Mass. The addition of two new board members at Staples give the leading office superstore operator additional expertise in two areas important for the company’s future growth.

Joining the Staples board were Justin King, ceo of food retailer J Sainsbury plc in the United Kingdom, and Robert Sulentic, group president at real estatate developer CB Richard Elllis. The expertise of a European food retailing executive and a real estate executive who currently oversees European operations should prove useful as Staples is expected to derive much of its future growth from international operations.

King has served as ceo as J Sainsbury since 2004 and prior to that he was with Marks & Spencer and Wal-Mart’s ASDA division. Sulentic spent the majority of his career with Trammel Crow, having joining the company in 1984. He was eventually named president and ceo of the firm which was acquired by CB Richard Ellis in December 2006.

“Justin brings a wealth of retail industry knowledge and international experience and Bob brings exceptional business acumen and commercial real estate knowledge, making them great additions to our strong board of directors,” said Ron Sargent, Staples chairman and ceo.

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