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NCPA reiterates opposition to proposed PBM merger before House subcommittee

BY Michael Johnsen

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Lawmakers should oppose the proposed mega-merger of pharmacy benefit managers Express Scripts and Medco Health Solutions, the National Community Pharmacists Association again told Congress members during a House subcommittee hearing held Friday.

“The resulting merger will harm patients by reducing choice, decreasing access to pharmacy services and ultimately leading to higher prescription drug costs paid by plan sponsors and consumers,” the group stated. “As community pharmacists whose primary concern is patient well-being, NCPA fervently opposes the proposed merger and asks Congress to do the same.”

NCPA’s statement reiterated the three chief ways the merger will harm an already dysfunctional system. First, the combined entity would dominate the country’s largest health plan market, including major government programs, leaving those patients and plan sponsors with virtually no ability to “shop around” with alternative vendors. Second, the combined entity would control 52% of the ultra-expensive specialty pharmacy segment — easily the fastest-growing part of pharmacy. Third, the merger would put in one company’s hands nearly 60% of the mail-order pharmacy business — again, leaving patients and clients with greatly reduced competition.

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BJ’s shareholders OK acquisition by Leonard Green, CVC

BY Allison Cerra

WESTBOROUGH, Mass. — At a special meeting held Friday, BJ’s Wholesale Club stockholders approved the definitive agreement between the company and Leonard Green & Partners and CVC Capital Partners to be acquired in an all-cash transaction valued at about $2.8 billion.

BJ’s anticipates the closing of the transaction, which was announced in late June, will occur around the end of the month.

The agreement was approved by holders of approximately 72% of the company’s outstanding common stock, while holders of approximately 0.4% of the company’s outstanding common stock voted against it. The payout to shareholders is $51.25 per share in cash.

Last month, the wholesaler reported that its second-quarter results beat expectations, thanks to strong performances in key categories and higher gas profitability.

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Mad Gab’s develops new Wildly Natural lip products

BY Antoinette Alexander

WESTBROOK, Maine — Mad Gab’s, a maker of natural body care products, is expanding its portfolio in October with a new collection of lip glosses, lip butters and lip shimmers.

The new Wildly Natural lip products are inspired by patterns found in nature and formulated with natural ingredients. The new products include:

  • Wildly Natural lip gloss: Moisturizes with shea butter and organic oils. Natural color and shine leave lips looking scrumptious. The lip gloss is available in pink, plum and bronze and packaged in a clear recyclable plastic squeeze tube. The suggested retail price is $6.

  • Wildly Natural lip shimmers: Moisturize with shea butter and organic extra-virgin olive oil while natural mica provides color and shimmer. The lip shimmers are available in pink, plum and bronze and packaged in a clear recyclable plastic tube. The suggested retail price is $5.

  • Wildly Natural lip butters: Contain shea and mango butters that soften lips while restoring moisture. Coconut-lime, lavender-vanilla and juicy mango lip butters come packaged in a clear recyclable plastic tube. The suggested retail price is $3.25.

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