Personnel Updates:

AB Acquisition LLC (Albertsons) and Safeway announced the new senior leadership team and division leaders for the combined company that will take effect upon the closing of the proposed merger transaction.

Cardinal Health announced that Michael Kaufmann has been named CFO and Jon Giacomin has been named CEO of the Pharmaceutical segment, both effective Nov. 11.

Diplomat Pharmacy announced that Stephen Brown has been named CIO.

General Nutrition Centers, Inc. revamped its executive team, hiring Jeffrey Hennion as Exec VP, Chief Marketing and E-commerce Officer, and Daisy Vanderlinde as Chief Human Resources Officer.

Kroger named Alex Tosolini to serve in the newly created role of Senior VP New Business Development, effective Nov. 3.

McKesson has elected Donald R. Knauss and Susan Salka as new independent directors of its board.

Walgreen Company promoted Jan Stern Reed to General Counsel for the company. The company also announced Bryan Pugh, VP Merchandising, Program Development and Execution, has left the company. John Spina, Walgreens Corporate VP Expense Optimization, and Don Huonker, Walgreens Chief Operational Risk Officer, will retire from the company effective Oct. 31.

Mergers & Acquisitions:

L’Oréal USA has announced plans to acquire multi-cultural beauty brand Carol’s Daughter.

Industry Insight:

Cardinal Health announced that independent pharmacies can now take advantage of opportunities to co-brand with the Medicine Shoppe and Medicap Pharmacy franchising systems. Retail independent pharmacies that participate in this co-branded franchise opportunity will receive membership in Medicine Shoppe International’s Pharmacy Services Administration Organization and related managed care services to help them gain access to commercial, Medicare, long-term care, immunization and rural payer networks.

CVS Health has entered into new clinical affiliations with three academic medical centers, the University of Maryland Medical System, University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston and the University of Alabama at Birmingham Health System, to enhance access to care for patients.

Sam’s Club announced a number of first-of-its-kind services, including the introduction of a health exchange service in partnership with Aetna, to better serve its small business clientelle.

Through a partnership with a Florida veterinary company, ShotVet, Walgreens is offering preventive care services for pets at about 50 select stores in Massachusetts. Services include rabies and other vaccines, and micro-chipping.

WebMD Health and Walgreens partnered on an initiative to help improve health and wellness in America by helping and incenting consumers to make healthier choices at home, work and on-the-go. In the coming months, the companies will work together to provide WebMD’s virtual wellness-coaching programs directly to Walgreens customers. Walgreens will also incorporate WebMD content on a variety of health topics, co-branded by WebMD and Walgreens, into its digital experience and stores. Additionally, visitors to WebMD will be able to use Walgreens’ prescription refill and clinic appointment scheduling options from within the WebMD site.

Technology News:

Walgreens announced the availability of Apple Pay at Walgreens and Duane Reade drug stores nationwide. Apple Pay works with iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus and the upcoming Apple Watch. Customers just hold their iPhone near the contactless reader at checkout, with their finger on Touch ID, to easily and securely pay.