Walgreen and CVS settle dispute
New York City Walgreen Co. and CVS Caremark Corp. announced Friday that they have settled a contract dispute over reimbursements for drug prescriptions and have managed to salvage a relationship worth billions of dollars.
Both companies said in a statement on Friday that Caremark members would continue to be able to have their prescriptions filled at Walgreens pharmacies.
Details of the agreement were not disclosed but the chains did say that it was a multi-year deal. Analysts had said the companies’ dispute was jeopardizing billions of dollars in sales for each chain, and predicted they would quickly come to a resolution, despite their very public conflict.
Walgreens and CVS have been negotiating for months and earlier in June said they would end the partnership that allows people whose prescription drug benefits are handled by Caremark to be reimbursed for prescriptions filled at Walgreen’s pharmacies.
Walgreens wanted to be paid more for filling prescriptions. Caremark makes money by reducing costs for plan members and sponsors.
“We are very pleased with the outcome of this mutual, multiyear agreement that meets our business objectives,” Kermit Crawford, executive VP pharmacy, Walgreen, said in a statement. “The agreement makes good business sense, provides the framework we need to operate our business going forward, and assures choice and convenience for the many consumers who look to us for quality pharmacy care.”
Caremark has one of the largest pharmacy benefits management networks. It negotiates contracts with employers and handles the drug benefit part of their health plans, paying pharmacies to fill prescriptions. It saves money by negotiating volume discounts.
“We are pleased to have reached a mutually agreeable solution together with Walgreens that is consistent with our top priority to provide convenient access to affordable high-quality pharmacy health care,” Per Lofberg, president of CVS’ pharmacy benefit management business, said in a statement.
Burger King Goes Green in Germany
Burger King Corp. has gone green in Germany, with the opening of an energy-efficient restaurant in Waghausel. The eco-friendly design, developed in cooperation with Wirsol Solar AG (Baden-Wurttemberg), uses state-of-the-art technologies and renewable energy to power one-third of the restaurant’s energy consumption, reducing energy costs by 45% and the emission of CO2 by more than 120 metric tons annually.
"This new energy-efficient restaurant uses renewable energy systems, such as solar photovoltaic and wind turbines that are estimated to save nearly half of this restaurant’s yearly electricity costs," said Jonathan Fitzpatrick, senior VP franchise operations for BKC’s Europe, Middle East and Africa region.
The restaurant features the chain’s sleek and futuristic store design, dubbed “20/20,” while also incorporating an array of eco-friendly technologies and energy-efficient construction elements, including:
* Interior heat-recovery ventilation system that cools and heats the restaurant, saving 73% of energy consumption per year;
* Long-lasting interior and exterior LED bulbs saving more than 55% of energy consumption annually;
* Excess heat loss is captured to generate hot water, conserving 50% of energy usage annually;
* A wind turbine contributing up to 2,500 kWh to the restaurant’s power supply was added to the traditional exterior logo sign;
* Photovoltaic and wind energy systems that save up to 45% of electricity annually; and
* More than 720 solar photovoltaic modules that generate over 53,500 kWh of electricity per year.
The restaurant also has a solar-powered electric vehicle charging station for hybrid cars and a rainwater reclamation system for landscape irrigation.
In addition, the new Burger King uses an energy-efficient broiler (Duke Flexible Batch Broiler) that maximizes cooking flexibility while reducing gas consumption and related costs by 52% and electricity consumption and costs by 90%. All the company’s restaurants in North America have installed the broiler and the international rollout is expected to be completed by the end of 2012.
Limited Brands sells remaining stake in Limited Stores
COLUMBUS, Ohio Limited Brands announced the sale of its remaining 25% stake in Limited Stores, LLC. Under the transaction terms, Limited Stores, LLC, which operates retail locations called The Limited, purchased Limited Brand’s remaining interest in the company for $32 million.
In 2007, Limited Brands sold a 75% stake in Limited Stores to an affiliate of Sun Capital Partners, a private investment firm that now owns 100% of Limited Stores. Limited Stores has more than 220 mall locations throughout the United States.
“This sale supports our focus on intimate apparel, personal care and beauty products,” said Leslie Wexner, chairman and CEO of Limited Brands. “We wish our long-time partners at Limited Stores continued success … this transition further enables both teams to win.”