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Matherly finds extra space in Sam’s ‘Portfolio’ for health, wellness

BY DSN STAFF

BENTONVILLE, Ark. — The Project 
Portfolio initiative at Sam’s Club may sound a lot like Walmart’s less-than-successful Project Impact undertaking, but the key distinction is that Sam’s variant of the strategic initiative has important ramifications for the health-and-wellness area. Overseeing those departments is Sam’s Club vet Todd Matherly, VP and divisional merchandise manager of health and wellness following a promotion last year.


In an effort to improve the productivity of existing clubs, Sam’s embarked on an ambitious remodeling program and determined the health-and-wellness and food categories as key to its ability to demonstrate value to members, drive traffic and sales, and gain market share.


Accordingly, Matherly has been given more space near the pharmacy to display an expanded assortment of health-and-wellness items, including an ever-changing mix of pallet drive features that incorporate branded manufacturers’ graphics to bring a sense of newness.


Indeed, health and wellness is a major focus for new initiatives at Sam’s Club. The warehouse club operator recently introduced a new $99-per-year preventive health-and-wellness program, including free monthly health screenings and a cutomized personal wellness plan.

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CVS’ innovations far from ‘Just the Basics’ with Bloom at helm

BY DSN STAFF

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — Looking for a merchant known for the ability to swiftly understand the big picture and move into action? Look no further than Mike Bloom of CVS/pharmacy.


This visionary merchant, who joined CVS as part of the People’s Drug Store acquisition in 1991 and was appointed SVP merchandising and supply chain in September 2009, is credited with giving rise to a number of concepts, including the “Life” store prototype initiative, which became the model for many other chain store makeovers. In more recent years, Bloom has had a significant hand in such innovations as the upscale Beauty360 format, as well as the Urban Cluster concept and a new private-label program.


In 2010, CVS took the wraps off its Urban Cluster store concept, which has a significant focus on consumables and is designed to be a convenient shopping destination for urban dwellers. Meanwhile, to take a leadership role in private label, the retailer has a brand new private-label program, Just The Basics, which represents a functional, value-priced, smart-simplicity positioning.

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Health Mart’s Canning makes good on goal to help indies compete

BY DSN STAFF

SAN FRANCISCO — For some guys, it’s just in their blood. That’s definitely the case for Tim Canning — you can say he was born into this business.


Canning, 1-of-8 children of the late, great Fred Canning — who, as president and COO of Walgreens during the late ’70s and ’80s, led a major turnaround of the company — is no doubt making his father incredibly proud these days, as he leads McKesson’s 2,700-plus-strong Health Mart stores, the fastest-growing pharmacy franchise operation in America.


Canning’s mission: to help a growing cadre of independent pharmacy operators compete against the big chains by operating more efficiently, building closer patient relationships and capturing additional revenue streams. Five years ago, it was a collection of just a few hundred stores. Today, the company has built a broad menu of clinically oriented health-and-wellness services for its customers, as well as a range of capabilities that give it some of the national branding, marketing and purchasing strengths of a corporate-owned chain.


Two strong examples of Health Mart’s “big chain” presence are a multimillion-dollar ad campaign that debuted in January 2010 during the Super Bowl and the Winter Olympics, and the company’s annual Health Mart Healthy Living Tour, which visited 80 stores across 18 states last year.

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