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Magnacca named Duane Reade’s new president

BY Antoinette Alexander

NEW YORK Duane Reade has promoted Joe Magnacca to president. Magnacca previously served as SVP and chief merchandising officer.

A Duane Reade spokesperson was not immediately available to comment or provide additional information.

Magnacca, who joined Duane Reade in the second half of 2008, has been instrumental in the chain?s turnaround. A 20-plus-year veteran of the retail industry, Magnacca previously worked for Canada’s Shoppers Drug Mart, where he led marketing and merchandising initiatives since 2002. He had most recently served as EVP merchandising and category management. Shoppers Drug Mart ranks as a leading Canadian retailer of beauty products and there’s no doubt Magnacca has brought — not simply to Duane Reade but to the U.S. mass market — a new level of merchandising expertise.

“As a Canadian we look at the drug store industry a little bit differently because we have more of a European slant on the overall business, so from a U.S. perspective it is quite different,” Magnacca told Drug Store News during a store tour in late 2009. “If you look at the European model they are certainly more advanced from a beauty point of view and from a convenience point of view. The European business model has really demonstrated how you can take drug to the next level.”

The turnaround strategy under Magnacca and the management team at Duane Reade has been aimed at improving pharmacy, fixing the customer experience and developing a relative, urban drug store box. These efforts have grown increasingly evident to New Yorkers shopping at the chain’s some 250 stores, with the most recent evidence being the opening of the new Union Square location.

As previously reported by Drug Store News, the new Union Square location, at the site formerly occupied by Virgin Superstore, is the chain’s flagship store, as it will reflect the company’s rejuvenation and new emphasis on health, fresh food, and higher-end beauty products.

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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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