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Good ‘Carma’ can pay off

BY Michael Johnsen

WHAT IT MEANS AND WHY IT’S IMPORTANT Parlaying a 73-year-old brand with a strong following into another synergistic category only can mean good things, especially as a significant amount of trial almost is a foregone conclusion.

(THE NEWS: Carmex enters skin care category. For the full story, click here)

And while that may shift some share around in skin care, it ultimately should help grow that business. Because with Carma Labs, you get a company that has been featured on more than one occasion on Oprah, a mecca of sorts for consumer-packaged goods companies. And you get a company that has been on the forefront in utilizing interactive social media to help promote the brand.

Carma Labs was one of two companies last week to announce a greater presence within the health and beauty space, the other being Reckitt Benkiser with its proposed acquisition of SSL International, parent company of Durex. If successful, Reckitt Benkiser will be making its debut in the intimacy health space, folding another health category under it’s wing and broadening the company’s reach into the U.S. market.

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Loblaw’s first small-model in-store pharmacy opens

BY Allison Cerra

BRAMPTON, Ontario Loblaw has opened its first small-model in-store pharmacy, offering the same amenities and convenience as a larger-size pharmacy, but in a compact area. The new pharmacy helps to fulfill the company’s vision to grow the number of pharmacies in its stores.

“Our goal is to provide convenience, quality and value to our customers. With this small model, we now have the ability to incorporate pharmacies into more of our stores, which will help complement our customers’ food shopping experience,” said Andrew Iacobucci, SVP drug business unit, Loblaw Cos. “Within this smaller footprint, we are pleased to be able to provide full pharmacy service with a highly trained and trusted pharmacy professional.”

The new small-scale pharmacy is approximately 400 sq. ft.

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Rite Aid gets into back-to-school groove

BY Allison Cerra

CAMP HILL, Pa. Rite Aid is helping customers save on back-to-school shopping through special offers, online coupons and its member-only Wellness+ customer rewards and discounts program.

The 4,800-store chain said that it has created a back-to-school shopping spread inside its August Single Check Rebate guide, a four-page pullout available online and in stores that contains more than 40 commonly requested school supplies worth more than $140 in rebate checks. Additionally, Rite Aid is utilizing its Video Values program at RiteAid.com, allowing consumers to watch videos and earn coupons on select products, which will feature a dozen back-to-school coupons in August.

The drug store chain also said many back-to-school discounts in Rite Aid circulars are available with the Rite Aid Wellness+ card. The Wellness+ customer rewards program provides members with free health-and-wellness benefits, as well as shopping discounts.

Items on sale include composition notebooks, snacks and more.

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