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Weis Markets to invest $101M in growth in 2014

BY Antoinette Alexander

SUNBURY, Pa. — Weis Markets has announced plans to invest $101 million in its growth program in 2014.

“Since 2008, we have invested more than $500 million in our growth and improvement programs. During this period, we completed more than 100 projects,” said Weis Markets president and CEO Jonathan Weis while briefing shareholders on the company’s plans and its results during the annual shareholder meeting. “This year, we plan to invest $101 million in growth and expect to complete work on 16 projects in 2014.”

Weis said the company opened four stores in 2013, with units in Woodlawn and Towson, Md., Hillsborough N.J., and Huntingdon Valley, Pa.

Weis also spoke of several key company initiatives, including its supply chain. “As a company that self-distributes, our supply chain is a vitally important area for us. Over the last year, we have increased our focus on maximizing efficiency by driving millions of dollars of cost out of the system, while maintaining our high standards for store service. This has helped us reduce store level inventories and improve freshness.”

He also said the company is planning to expand its 1.1 million square foot distribution center in Milton, Pa., in 2014.

 

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Prestige buys Insight Pharmaceuticals for $750 million, expands portfolio

BY Antoinette Alexander

TARRYTOWN, N.Y.-. — Prestige Brands Holdings, whose portfolio includes Chloraseptic sore throat treatments, Clear Eyes eye care products and Compound W wart treatments, has entered into an agreement to acquire Insight Pharmaceuticals, the maker of Monistat, for $750 million in cash.

As part of the transaction, Prestige will acquire tax attributes with a present value of approximately $100 million, which results in an effective purchase price of approximately $650 million. This transaction, combined with the Hydralyte transaction announced on April 15, is expected to result in pro forma revenues and adjusted EBITDA of approximately $800 million and $300 million, respectively for the company in fiscal 2015.

The transaction will extend Prestige’s portfolio of OTC brands to include Insight’s feminine care platform anchored by Monistat, an OTC yeast infection treatment. Insight’s portfolio also includes EPT home pregnancy test products and other feminine care brands. The acquisition will give Prestige a leading platform in feminine care in the United States and Canada, while also adding other OTC brands to its cough-cold, pain relief, eye and ear, and dermatological platforms.

The transaction is expected to be immediately accretive to the company’s earnings per share and free cash flow per share, exclusive of transaction, integration and purchase accounting items. The company anticipates closing on this transaction during the first half of this fiscal year, subject to customary closing conditions, including clearance under the Hart-Scott Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976.

“The acquisition of Insight Pharmaceuticals will add the attractive new feminine care platform to the Prestige portfolio. The platform is anchored by Monistat, the No. 1 brand in its category and the brand recommended most by doctors. Monistat will become the company’s largest and its first $100 million brand,” stated Matthew Mannelly, CEO of Prestige Brands.

He added, “The acquisition is expected to boost Prestige’s annual revenues to approximately $800 million, bringing us closer to our stated goal of becoming a billion dollar OTC products company. We expect that our already industry-leading free cash flow and EBITDA margins will further strengthen as a result of the acquisition of Insight. Our excellent financial profile and strong free cash flow will enable us to rapidly de-lever, consistent with our prior acquisitions.”

Insight Pharmaceuticals is a portfolio holding of Swander Pace Capital and its co-investment partner, Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan.

 

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Scott, Williams to leave Walmart board

BY Mike Troy

BENTONVILLE, Ark. — Former Walmart CEO Lee Scott and Audit Committee chairman Christopher Williams will step down from the retailer’s board in June.

Scott stepped down as CEO in early 2009 after joining Walmart in 1979. Walmart said Scott’s departure was in keeping with its historical practice of board service for prior CEO’s. It also helps the company avoid having too many insiders on the board as former CEO Mike Duke is on the board as is Doug McMillion who succeeded Duke as CEO earlier this year.

Williams served on the board for the past 10 years, the last two of which have been more like a full time job. Williams served as chairman of the four member Audit Committee tasked with investigating and overseeing matters related to alleged violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

The Audit Committee met 22 times last year, making Williams the most highly compensated board members with $348,000 in pay, and oversaw the expenditure of $282 million related to FCPA matters. That was on top of the 15 Audit Committee meetings held the prior year and expenditures of $157 million.

Walmart did not indicate who would replace Williams as chair of the Audit Committee.

 

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