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Walgreens to Buy Specialty Pharmacy

BY CSA STAFF

Deerfield, Ill. Walgreen Co. said Tuesday that it will acquire McKesson Corp.’s specialty pharmacy, a business that operates within McKesson’s Specialty division.

While the terms of the agreement were not disclosed, the parties expect to close the transaction within 60 days, according to a company statement.

The acquisition will include the McKesson specialty pharmacy in Pittsburgh, Pa.; and Frisco, Texas-based IVPCARE, which operates locations in Torrence, Calif., Wilmington, Mass. and St. Louis.

The retailer expects the transaction to strengthen its position as the fourth strongest specialty pharmacy in the country.

“The acquisition of McKesson’s specialty-pharmacy operations offers the opportunity to grow our own specialty pharmacy business with preferred payor agreements,” said Stanley B. Blaylock, president of Walgreens Health Services. “This transaction will broaden access for patients and clients in the fast-growing oncology area and other specialty areas including multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis and reproductive health services.”

Currently, Walgreens operates 6,479 drug stores in 49 states, and it reported sales of $59 billion for fiscal 2008.

In other news, the company has also formed a special committee to find a replacement for its departing CEO and chairman Jeffrey Rein.

Since the 26-year Walgreens veteran retired from his positions earlier this month, Alan McNally the lead director of the Walgreen Co. board, has replaced Rein as chairman. He will also serve on the committee seeking a new CEO. The committee said it will consider candidates from both within and outside of the company.

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From The Boston Herald: Granoff out as Tweeter ceo

BY CSA STAFF

BOSTON The Boston Herald reported that Tweeter Newco ceo George Granoff has left the company, apparently after a disagreement with its New York investment firm owner.

Click here to read the full article.

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CEA: Consumer electronics top holiday wish lists

BY CSA STAFF

ARLINGTON, Va. Consumer electronics products continue to top the holiday wish lists of adults and teens, resulting in 3.5% projected growth in fourth quarter industry shipments over last year, according to new research released today by the Consumer Electronics Association.

Consumer electronics comprise four of the top 10 items on adults holiday gift wish lists, with computers coming in second behind peace and happiness. Televisions, video game systems and cell phones also made the top 10. Nearly 80% of adults expressed interest in receiving a consumer electronics product as a gift this holiday season, an increase of four points from last year. Meanwhile, 84% of teens want to receive a CE product this year, up eight percent from 2007. The most popular CE products for teens this holiday are computers, video game consoles, portable mp3 players and cell phones.

There remains a robust desire for consumer electronics and this category continues to be the bright light during these dark economic times, said Tim Herbert, CEAs senior director of market research. CE devices have become integrated into the everyday lives of consumers. No matter what your current economic situation, you can find a CE product to fit any holiday budget. 

Consumers plan on spending a total of $1,437 this holiday season on everything from gifts to food to decorations. That number is down nearly $200 from last year as consumers cite cost of living increases and economic concerns as reasons for cutting back. While consumers are planning to spend less this holiday season, theyre actually preparing to spend more on consumer electronics. Twenty-eight percent of the total holiday budget is being allocated for CE purchases, an increase of six percent from last holiday.

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