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Rite OTC site

This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary will host an online Rite Aid OTC store slated to launch this year, the companies say Sept. 4. Camp Hill, Pa.-based Rite Aid will receive rights to all Rx drugs ordered online for in-store pickup and will pay $10 million. "Having our own online OTC store and being able to market directly" to the pharmacy chain's customer base "is an important next step in our digital strategy," says Rite Aid Chief Operating Officer Rob Easley. Dawn Lepore, CEO of Bellevue, Wash.-based, says she expects increased sales as "Rite Aid will develop marketing programs to drive traffic to the new site." The e-retailer's 2007 net sales, announced in February, were below expectations due to increased marketing costs (1"The Tan Sheet" Feb. 11, 2008, In Brief)

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Starting in mid-2009, the e-retailer will help Medco Health Solutions offer OTC product recommendations aligned with the known health conditions of its more than 60 million U.S. members. The collaboration also will provide "an advanced safety net" to screen for potential interactions between OTC remedies and Rx drugs, Bellevue, Wash.-based announces Nov. 20. In September, the Web site announced it will host an online store for drug store chain Rite-Aid (1"The Tan Sheet" Sept. 8, 2008, In Brief) earnings

OTC net sales advanced 18.3 percent to $234.3 million in 2007, "in line with e-commerce trends, but below our expectations due to increased marketing costs in paid search and portals," the e-commerce marketer announces during a Feb. 6 analyst meeting. Gross profit for OTCs during the year advanced 19.8 percent to $69.8 million. For the fourth quarter, OTC revenues were up 17.4 percent to $65.8 million, while gross profit for the period advanced 31.6 percent to $20.5 million.'s net sales for the full year grew 7.2 percent to $445.7 million, though the firm experienced a $9 million loss during the quarter, an improvement over a loss of $13 million last year. In 2008, the company plans to fuel top-line revenue growth in part by driving OTC sales up 20 percent year-over-year, the company says...

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