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MassBiologics grants licensing agreement to Merck for tetanus-diphtheria vaccine

BY Alaric DeArment

BOSTON A biotech developer owned by the University of Massachusetts Medical School has granted drug maker Merck exclusive U.S. rights to its tetanus and diphtheria vaccine, Merck announced Wednesday.

 

MassBiologics said it had signed a licensing agreement with Merck that would grant the Whitehouse Station, N.J.-based drug maker rights to market and distribute its tetanus and diphtheria toxoids adsorbed vaccine in the United States, with the exception of Massachusetts, where MBL will continue distributing it. Merck plans to begin distributing the vaccine in June. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

 

 

“Adult vaccination is an important element in Merck’s commitment to help people be well, and we are delighted to partner with MBL to add tetanus-diphtheria vaccine to our broad U.S. portfolio of adult vaccines,” Merck Vaccines SVP and general manager for adolescent and adult vaccines Soren Bo Christiansen said.

 

 

The Food and Drug Administration licensed MBL’s Td vaccine in 1970.

 

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American Greetings brings more Taylor Swift to fans

BY Allison Cerra

CLEVELAND American Greetings is offering Taylor Swift fans the opportunity to attend her sold-out concert tour.

Fans and greeting card enthusiasts of all ages can enter by becoming a fan of American Greetings on Facebook. A random drawing of concert tickets and weekly prizes will be given away to support the exclusive partnership between American Greetings and Taylor Swift. The contest ends on May 31.

“We’re all Taylor Swift fans at American Greetings,” stated Maureen Meidenbauer, Taylor Swift brand manager. “Taylor’s unique ability to connect with millions through her songs about relationships and love, makes it so much fun for all of us to work together and bring new products both to our retail partners and online customers. We’re proud that she is part of the American Greetings family.”

Currently, Taylor Swift greeting cards can be found at select American Greetings retail partners throughout the United States and Canada, http://corporate.americangreetings.com/storelocator.html and the new e-cards can be found online at http://www.americangreetings.com/ecards/taylorswift.

A list of concert locations and official rules can be found at http://www.facebook.com/AmericanGreetings?v=app_111917622169029.

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Supervalu makes changes to its board of directors

BY Allison Cerra

MINNEAPOLIS One of the nation’s largest supermarket changes is changing the size and composition of its board of directors.

Supervalu said it’s scaling back its board from 15 to 12 directors but will bring in two new board members (at its annual meeting) to enhance its oversight of the company: Matthew Rubel, president, chairman and CEO of Collective Brands Inc. (owner of Payless ShoeSource), and Donald Chappel, SVP and CFO of The Williams Cos., an energy transmission company. Additionally, the chain is expected to name Wayne Sales, retired vice chairman of Canadian Tire Corp. as its nonexecutive chairman.

After many years of distinguished service, five board members are leaving the company. Following his 2009 retirement announcement, Jeff Noddle, current chairman of the board and former Supervalu CEO, will be retiring effective at the company’s annual meeting in June 2010. Lawrence A. Del Santo, who has been a director since 1997 and lead director since 2006; and Garnett L. Keith, Jr., are also retiring from the board effective at the annual meeting. In addition, A. Gary Ames and Marissa T. Peterson, whose terms would expire in 2011, voluntarily resigned from the board effective April 14.

Sales stated, “The board is grateful for the leadership that Jeff and Larry have provided, and the important contributions of all of our directors. These include, most recently, their execution of a successful transition to new leadership under Craig Herkert, the guidance they have provided to help Supervalu navigate through the recent economic environment while maintaining its focus on long-term value creation, and their dedication to the highest standards of board governance.”

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