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Express Scripts Cites Smooth Transition From Walgreen

By Jon Kamp Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES Express Scripts Inc. (ESRX) has had a smooth transition away from its relationship with Walgreen Co. (WAG), which left the pharmacy-benefit manager's network on Jan. 1 following a contract-renewal dispute, Express Scripts Chief Executive George Paz said Thursday. The broken relationship meant people with drug benefits covered by Express Scripts--about one-fifth of the company's business--had to find another pharmacy to get the best price when filling prescriptions. Express Scripts added staff ahead of the shift to handle customer calls and guard against disruption. "We're quite content where we sit today," Paz said regarding the move. He spoke on a conference call with analysts following Express Scripts' earnings release late Wednesday. He reiterated that the company remains willing to talk to Walgreen about potentially renewing the relationship, "but it has got to be in the best interest of our shareholders and patients." The companies could not come to agreement on prescription-reimbursement rates before their prior contract expired. Both companies have accused the other side of pushing unreasonable terms. Express Scripts' fourth-quarter earnings were lower than analysts expected, despite stronger revenue, as the company spent to accelerate projects and free space for the integration of Medco Health Solutions Inc. (MHS). Express Scripts plans to close a planned deal for Medco, a rival PBM, in the first half this year provided the companies achieve U.S. antitrust clearance. Express Scripts shares traded up 2.8% to $53.05 early Thursday. --By Jon Kamp, Dow Jones Newswires; 617-654-6728; jon.kamp@dowjones.com

Stock News for Medco (MHS)
DateTimeHeadline
04/02/201219:28:09CORRECT: US Stocks End At Multiyear Highs On US Manufacturing...
04/02/201212:18:34CORRECT: Medco Executives Paid Max 2011 Bonuses; Express Scripts...
04/02/201212:04:59Medco Executives Paid Max 2011 Bonuses; Express Scripts More...
04/02/201210:39:10WSJ BLOG/Health: A.M. Vitals: Some States Move Forward Voluntarily...
04/02/201209:11:32Express Scripts Closes $29.1 Billion Medco Acquisition
03/30/201218:20:08US Pharmacy Groups Seek Temporary Restraining Order Vs Deal
03/29/201213:40:34Pharmacy Groups File Suit Against Express Scripts, Medco Deal
03/28/201209:47:51Express Scripts, Medco Say Deal Could Close Next Week
03/27/201214:56:14Walgreen Sees Flexibility To Keep Medco Clients If Merger Wins...
03/23/201220:04:33Medco To Pay $2.8 Million To Resolve CalPERS Payment Probe
03/19/201211:11:36Express Scripts/Medco Deal Could Face State Lawsuits -Bloomberg
03/12/201218:15:43Express Scripts, Medco Continue To Work With FTC On Deal
02/28/201211:29:17CVS Says Tailwinds Favor PBM-Retail Hybrid Business Model
02/23/201210:28:13Express Scripts Cites Smooth Transition From Walgreen
02/21/201207:22:31Medco Health 4Q Net Rises 12% As Revenue Easily Tops Estimates
02/08/201213:17:21Insurer Coventry Health Care Extends Pact With Medco By 3 Years
02/06/201214:31:04Big Grocery Chains Ask FTC To Block Medco-Express Scripts Deal...
02/06/201212:35:37February's Flurry Of Issuance Continues For High-Grade Corporates
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01/12/201211:51:48FTC: CVS Caremark Settles Deceptive Pricing Charges, Will Pay...

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