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Walgreen Plans Return to Times Square

BY CSA STAFF

New York City Walgreen Co. this summer will open a two-level, 27,000-sq.-ft. store in the middle of Manhattan’s Times Square. The store will be marked with a 17,000-sq.-ft. digital banner that will ascend from ground level up and around three sides of the 25-story building, according to a report on ChicagoTribune.com.

The store will be located in One Times Square, the same spot where Walgreens operated a store during the Depression. It’s also the same building from which the famous ball descends every New Year’s Eve.

“So next New Year’s Eve, we’re all going to be able to watch the ball drop from the top of our building, in front of a very powerful drugstore and some incredible signage,” Walgreens chairman and CEO Jeffrey Rein told shareholders at the annual meeting Jan. 9, according to the report.

Walgreens operates only a handful of stores in the Big Apple. It shuttered its Times Square store in the 1970s when the district became known for strip clubs and high crime rates.

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Kroger approves $1 billion buyback plan

BY CSA STAFF

CINCINNATI Kroger announced today that its board of directors has authorized the repurchase of $1 billion of Kroger common stock.

According to Kroger, the repurchase authorization replaces the $1 billion stock buyback announced in June 2007. The timing of the repurchases will vary according to market conditions, the company reported.

Kroger said it plans to use free cash flow to repurchase shares and pay dividends. Since January 2000, Kroger has returned $4.8 billion in stock repurchases and $290 million in dividends to shareholders.

“The new share repurchase authorization reflects our confidence in the company’s Customer 1st strategic plan and our belief that Kroger shares represent an attractive investment opportunity,” said David Dillon, Kroger chairman and ceo.

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Report: Wal-Mart purges magazine rack

BY CSA STAFF

BENTONVILLE, Ark. Wal-Mart reportedly has decided to remove more than 1,000 magazines from its stores.

The New York Post reported that the company is thought to generate more than 20% of all retail magazine sales in the United States.

The Post reported that most of the magazines are small, or discontinued titles such as Child, Celebrity Living and FHM. However, some big names, including Better Homes & GardensParenting and Town & Country, will no longer have a place on Wal-Mart shelves.

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