PHARMACY

Amid 27-store opening blast, Target debuts first Hawaii units

BY Jim Frederick

MINNEAPOLIS Target is breaking into the Hawaiian Islands for the first time, opening two new general merchandise stores with pharmacies in the midst of a 27-store grand opening blitz this coming weekend in markets throughout the United States.

Target’s entry into Hawaii is sure to pour more gasoline onto an already red-hot competitive inferno in the 50th state. Hawaii is home to local powerhouse Longs Drug Stores, which is retaining its powerful name in the Islands, despite its takeover last year by CVS Caremark. Given the chain’s long history serving Hawaii – and a market-leading presence of three dozen stores serving the state’s roughly 2 million residents – the Longs name remains a formidable market contender.

Also adding to the competitive heat: Walgreen Co., which is ramping up with several new stores in Honolulu and elsewhere after opening its first Hawaii store in October, 2007. The state is also home to Kmart and Wal-Mart stores with pharmacies.

Target will grand openings on March 8 in two Hawaii markets: Honolulu and Kapolei. Beyond that, the company is mute about its future plans for the islands. But the upscale discount chain’s determination to expand in the face of a dismal economic climate is clear. The Hawaii debut is part of a 27-store, simultaneous grand-opening celebration occurring Sunday in Texas, Ohio, Georgia, Iowa, California and other states. Among the new stores: 21 general merchandise stores with pharmacies – including a new Target in Rogers, Ark., the birthplace of Sam Walton’s first Wal-Mart store – and six SuperTarget locations.

“As of Sunday…Target will serve guests at 1,699 stores in 49 states [and] 34 distribution centers,” the company reported Tuesday.

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McKesson Canada withdraws acquisition offer

BY Alaric DeArment

MONTREAL McKesson Canada has withdrawn its offer to take over Uniprix, the company has announced.

McKesson Canada said the number of shares tendered was not enough to meet the Jan. 19 acquisition offer’s conditions.

“Despite withdrawing our offer, McKesson Canada will continue to support the independent pharmacy business model,” McKesson Canada president Domenic Pilla said in a statement. “As such, our desire to help the Uniprix Group succeed and to see further growth among its banners remains strong, and we wish to pursue our longstanding business relationship.”

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D&W Fresh Markets, Family Fare and VG’s Expand Discounted Generic Drug Program

BY Drug Store News Team

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. On March 1, D&W Fresh Market, Family Fare and VG’s pharmacies expanded their generic drug program to 90-day prescriptions for $10, the companies announced.

D&W Fresh Market, Family Fare and VG’s Pharmacies are also increasing the number of women’s health medications they offer at the discounted price. These include prescription drugs such as tamoxifen to treat breast cancer and pre-natal vitamins.

Presently, there are two programs offering lower prices on over 300 generic drugs to meet the healthcare needs and healthcare budgets of our customers. These pharmacies are also increasing the number of women’s health medications as part of the generic drug program offer.

This new initiative expands the program introduced in November 2008 that provides a $4 price for more than 300 generic drugs prescribed in 30-day supplies. It also complements several other programs these stores are offering customers to help them stretch their food, fuel, healthcare and household budgets cross promotions, bonus savings and other initiatives.

“Our expanded generic drug program is another example of the many ways we are making it easier for customers to stretch their food, healthcare, and household dollars,” said Alan Hartline, EVP mechandising. “Our customers can continue to rely on the expert health counsel and friendly service our team of professional pharmacists consistently offer.”

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