FINANCE

Walgreens cleared to acquire Duane Reade

BY CSA STAFF

Deerfield, Ill. Walgreen Co. announced Tuesday that it has received regulatory clearance from the U.S. Federal Trade Commission to complete its acquisition of Duane Reade Holdings.

Walgreens said it expects to complete the acquisition of New York City-based drug chain Duane Reade in early to mid-April.

“We’re clear to move forward and complete the Duane Reade acquisition, which will immediately give Walgreens a leading position in the nation’s largest drugstore market,” said Walgreens president and CEO Greg Wasson. “We look forward to combining the strengths of our two companies to best serve our customers in the New York metropolitan area and the many communities we serve nationwide, while also creating real value for our shareholders.”

On Feb. 17, Walgreens signed a definitive agreement under which Walgreens will acquire Duane Reade from affiliates of Oak Hill Capital Partners. In the cash transaction, Walgreens will acquire all 257 Duane Reade drug stores in the New York City metropolitan area, as well as the corporate office and two distribution centers.

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Churchill China introduces Jamie Oliver collection

BY CSA STAFF

NEW YORK Churchill China unveiled a new tabletop line from celebrity chef Jamie Oliver at the International Home and Housewares show last week, according to reports.

The collection features dinnerware designed for easy use by the home cook, reports indicate. Items in the collection are reported to be multi-functional, easy to store and durable.

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Easter costs (a little) more this year

BY CSA STAFF

Target’s Easter circular this year featured virtually all of the same categories and weighed in at 36 pages, but prices were increased in select areas including bags of Easter candy featured on the cover at $2.69 versus $1.99 last year. Candy may cost more, but the price of small bamboo baskets (75 cents), Easter grass (25 cents), 12-count unfilled plastic eggs (65 cents) and Peeps ($1.49) stayed the same.

Price increases were evident on asparagus, $1.99 versus $1.49 last year, Sutton Dodge bone-in roast, $6.99 versus $5.99 last year, Market Pantry frozen turkey at 99 cents versus 78 cents last year and Campbell’s cream of mushroom soup at 75 cents compared to 66 cents.

Prices on other directly comparable advertised food items that were featured both years remained constant and included strawberries ($1.99), Philadelphia Cream Cheese (99 cents), Archer Farms bread ($2.99) and a complete Easter feast ($59.99). Prices declined in a few cases, including whole pineapple at $2.50 this year versus $2.99 last year and Kraft jet-puffed marshmallows at 96 cents this year versus 99 cents last year.

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