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NACDS launches advertising campaign as RxImpact Day approaches

BY Brian Berk

ARLINGTON, Va. — The National Association of Chain Drug Stores introduced an advertising campaign, referred to as its “Access Agenda,” in preparation for its RxIMPACT Day on Capitol Hill, taking place March 14 and March 15 in Washington D.C. The ads state “Pharmacists provide access to better healthcare every day,” and “We’re here to provide access to health policy solutions.”

“NACDS will bring our ‘Access Agenda’ to Capitol Hill with the personal insights and experiences of pharmacy team members who serve as the face of neighborhood healthcare,” said NACDS President and CEO Steven C. Anderson, IOM, CAE. “The ads emphasize the point that pharmacy is a go-to source for public policy solutions, just as pharmacy is a go-to source for accessible, quality and affordable health and wellness services.”

The ads refer viewers to a microsite summarizing policy positions that advocates will take to members of Congress. Among them, NACDS is urging a commitment to the cost-effective prescription drug benefit in Medicaid and in Medicare amid the current discussions of potential changes to the Affordable Care Act. NACDS also is urging enactment of the Pharmacy and Medically Underserved Areas Enhancement Act (H.R. 592 and S. 109), to improve healthcare access for medically underserved Medicare patients.

“NACDS is drawing attention to pharmacy’s role in a positive and proactive public dialogue about healthcare issues. For example, in addition to our meetings on Capitol Hill, the NACDS RxIMPACT program welcomes members of Congress for pharmacy tours and other in-district and in-state events, which are incredibly helpful for demonstrating real-life healthcare issues in real-life settings,” Anderson explained.

“NACDS is setting the tone for even higher levels of collaboration that we are seeking with other segments of the healthcare delivery system, with policymakers and with thought leaders. NACDS is committed to thinking like a start-up, and to positioning the Association more like a think-tank to collaborate for innovative solutions,” he concluded.

This year marks the ninth time NACDS has had RxIMPACT Day on Capitol Hill.

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Walgreens Boots Alliance fills chief marketing, chief merchandising positions

BY Michael Johnsen

DEERFIELD, Ill. — Walgreens Boots Alliance on Friday named two executives to the chief marketing officer and chief merchandising officer positions, promoting Adam Holyk and Joe Hartsig, respectively, to those roles.

Both will assume their new roles as of April 1 and report to Alex Gourlay, co-COO for Walgreens Boots Alliance.

Holyk and Hartsig will be succeeding Linda Filler, who was Walgreens Boots Alliance president retail products and chief merchandising and marketing officer, and in February announced her pending departure.

"Adam Holyk, currently a member of the WBA corporate strategy team, will return to Walgreens to lead the marketing organization," Walgreens shared with Drug Store News in an emailed statement. "Adam began his career with Walgreens in 2011 in the customer insights group, which at the time, was part of marketing. Previously, Holyk held senior roles at dunnhumby, a leading marketing analytics consultancy working with Kroger and Macy's, and Shoppers Drug Mart managing the most successful retailer loyalty program in Canada."

Regarding Hartsig, "[he]will continue in his role leading Walgreens merchandising team, which he has done since August of last year," Walgreen stated. "In addition to leading the merchandising team, he will oversee digital commerce and mobile services with a strategic focus on strengthening the company’s omni-channel capabilities."

Hartsig joined Walgreens in September 2015 as group VP merchandising strategic projects, and led the marketing, loyalty and digital commerce organizations.  Prior to this, Hartsig was chief merchandising and marketing officer for Essendant, a Fortune 500 wholesaler of business essentials, and SVP merchandising at Sam's Club, a division of Walmart.
 
Hartsig will also have a reporting line into Annie Murphy, chief customer officer for Walgreens Boots Alliance, and Holyk will have a reporting line into Andy Gibson, SVP, director, global consumer brands for Walgreens Boots Alliance, the Chicago-based retailer noted.
 

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Weis Markets generates Q4 same-store sales growth of 3.4%

BY Michael Johnsen

SUNBURY, Pa. — Weis Markets on Thursday posted a fourth-quarter sales increase of 17.6% to $925.1 million, adjusted for the extra week in 2016, driven by comparable-store sales gains of 3.4% for the 14-week period ended Dec. 31.

For the year, the company's sales increased 9% to $3.1 billion. Year-to-date net income increased 46.9% to $87.2 million, while earnings per share increased 46.6 percent to $3.24 compared to $2.21 in 2015. Year-to-date operating income increased 8.3% to $98.3 million.

"In 2016, we acquired and converted 44 stores in 96 days and generated more than $3 billion in sales for the first time in our 104 year history," stated Jonathan Weis, chairman and CEO, Weis Markets. "We continued to improve every aspect of our operations in 2016, including supply chain, merchandising and in-store experience, which resulted in a year of strong sales and earnings growth."

The company attributes its comparable sales and net income increases in 2016 to continuing price investments, disciplined sales promotions, an enhanced customer experience and improved supply chain efficiencies.  It also benefited from strong increases in its pharmacy and fresh department sales.

Also Thursday, Weis Markets celebrated the grand opening of its latest flagship store, featuring a drive-thru pharmacy and dedicated in-store dietician.

 

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