Personnel Updates

The Bartell Drug Company has selected Brian Unmacht as its new President.

Michigan Pharmacists Association announced that Jennifer Hagerman, Senior Director of Education and Quality at Diplomat Pharmacy, will take office as the President.

Rite Aid announced that Jocelyn Zazyczny Konrad has been promoted to Group VP Pharmacy Initiatives and Clinical Services.

Walgreens Boots Alliance announced that Thomas Sabatino Jr., Exec VP, Global Chief Legal and Administrative Officer, will be leaving the company effective Feb. 9.

Walmart named Labeed Diab Senior VP and President Health and Wellness.


Financial Focus

Walgreens changed its Nasdaq Stock Market ticker symbol to “WBA” following the closing of the reorganization of Walgreens into a holding company structure.


Mergers and Acquisitions

Walgreen Co. has approved all proposals related to the company’s acquisition of the remaining 55 percent of Alliance Boots and the reorganization of the company into a holding company structure. The transaction will fully combine the two companies to form the first global pharmacy-led, health and wellbeing enterprise, Walgreens Boots Alliance.

Walgreens announced that it has signed a definitive agreement with Madison Dearborn Partners to acquire a majority interest in Walgreens Infusion Services. When the transaction closes, Walgreens Infusion Services will become a new independent, privately-held company.  Walgreens Boots Alliance will own a significant minority interest and have representatives on the company’s board of directors. The transaction is expected to close during the second quarter of 2015.


Industry Insight

Bartell Drugs is looking to expand the initiative and roughly double the number of clinics in 2015. The pharmacy retailer plans to open four or five CareClinics this year. Bartell Drugs operates the CareClinics in partnership with Group Health Cooperative. The clinics are staffed with nurse practitioners and physician’s assistants.

CVS Health is now offering talking prescription labels as well as braille and large print labels through its mail service pharmacy to CVS/caremark members who are blind or visually impaired.

Tops Friendly Markets, a grocer in upstate New York, northern Pennsylvania and western Vermont, is closing pharmacy departments in 27 of its locations this month and transferring pharmacy prescriptions and inventory to five CVS and 22 Rite Aid pharmacy locations near each affected store.

Walgreens Boots Alliance marked its first week as a new public company with the official launch of its new corporate identity including its new logo and its purpose, vision and values as set out on its website,


Real Estate

Pharmaca Integrative Pharmacy announced the opening of its newest location in Beaverton, OR. The Beaverton location will be closely followed by new locations in Los Altos and Laguna Hills, CA, in 2015.


Technology News

Rite Aid stores in New York and Los Angeles will be featuring futuristic end-caps in partnership with Provision Interactive Technologies. The kiosks generate eye-popping, 3-D holographic videos and will include exclusive wellness+ information and Rite Aid promotions.

Walgreens announced the launch of its private label wearables device on YouTube.  The new wearable smart watch will be marketed under its “Well at Walgreens” banner.  The device can accept incoming calls and text messages, track steps, monitor sleep patterns and is automatically connected to Walgreens’ loyalty program Balance Rewards.


Green Initiatives

Walgreens broke new ground with its store in Evanston, IL, which stands as the first net-zero energy retail store in the United States. The 14,000 sq. ft. space combines a variety of renewable energy technologies, including two wind turbines and 850 solar panels, to generate as much energy as possible.