PHARMACY

Weis goes mobile for on-the-go customers

BY Michael Johnsen

SUNBURY, Pa. — Weis Markets on Thursday announced the launch of a mobile version of WeisMarkets.com offering customers access to its weekly circular, online ordering options for gift cards and party platters, prescription refills and a new Healthy Living section.

The mobile version of WeisMarkets.com also offers access to the ePharmacy section, where customers can register for prescription refills at the Weis pharmacy of their choice. And customers easily can access the company’s Healthy Living section, where they can submit food and nutrition questions to Weis Markets’ registered dietitians, learn about Weis’ Healthy Bites program, find recipe ideas and research wellness topics.

The mobile version also offers smartphone users improved access, and is optimized for fast browsing and downloading, the mid-state Pennsylvania grocer stated.

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PHARMACY

Kinray acquisition drives Cardinal Health’s Q2

BY Allison Cerra

DUBLIN, Ohio — Second-quarter revenue for Cardinal Health rose 2%, thanks in part to its acquisition of pharmaceutical distributor Kinray.

Revenue for the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2010, totaled $25.4 billion, compared with the prior-year period. Similarly, Cardinal Health’s earnings per share from continuing operations jumped 21% to 69 cents.

Cardinal Health said its acquisition of Kinray extended the company’s reach to the independent pharmacy community "by adding approximately 2,000 pharmacy customers," Cardinal Health chairman and CEO, George Barrett, said. Cardinal Health also added that its acquisition of Yong Yu in China built on the company’s foray into the international healthcare market.

Breaking down its second-quarter results, the company’s pharmaceutical segment experienced a 2% boost in revenue — thanks to nonbulk customers — to $23.2 billion. Segment profit increased 11% to $289 million, which was attributed to stronger generic sales and sourcing initiatives.

Revenue for the medical segment declined 1% to $2.2 billion, primarily driven by previously disclosed fiscal 2010 customer losses and a strong flu season in the prior-year period. Segment profit was $102 million, even with the prior year, Cardinal Health reported.

In related news, the healthcare services company also disclosed early renewal of a distribution agreement with Walgreens to supply pharmaceuticals to the retailer’s national network of retail pharmacies.

Cardinal Health raised its full-year guidance with an earnings-per-share range of $2.54 to $2.60.

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Valeant receives U.S., Canadian rights for Zovirax

BY Alaric DeArment

MISSISSAUGA, Ontario — Drug maker Valeant Pharmaceuticals International has acquired U.S. and Canadian rights to certain formulations of a GlaxoSmithKline drug used to treat cold sores.

Valeant announced Thursday that it had acquired the rights to nonophthalmic topical formulations of Zovirax (acyclovir) from GSK for $300 million through its Canadian subsidiary, Biovail Labs.

“We believe that Zovirax is a strong brand with continuing growth opportunities,” Valeant CEO J. Michael Pearson said. “The current distribution agreement between GSK and BLS was problematic for both companies, and this new arrangement should solve this issue for both organizations.”

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