WSL Future of Health Event

McKesson agrees to buy Rexall

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TORONTO — McKesson Corp. announced on March 2 that it would strengthen its position in Canada’s pharmaceutical supply chain by acquiring drug store operator Rexall Health from Katz Group for $3 billion (Canadian).

Rexall Health operates 470 Rexall/Rexall Pharma Plus pharmacies in six provinces and one territory. McKesson already owns drug stores in Canada and supplies drugs to Rexall and other pharmacies.

McKesson is also acquiring Rexall Health’s other businesses: Medicentres Canada — a group of family health care clinics serving Edmonton, Calgary, London and Windsor, Alberta — and Claim­secure Inc., which provides value-added health benefit claims management and plan administrative services to Canadian companies and other health plan sponsors.

The deal builds on McKesson’s 2012 acquisition of Katz Group’s independent and franchise pharmacy unit.

“The acquisition of Rexall Health supports McKesson’s commitment to drive value in the industry by improving health care solutions delivered in the pharmacy,” McKesson chairman and chief executive officer John Hammergren said in a statement. “It enhances our ability to provide best-in-class pharmacy care through an expanded retail footprint for patients across Canada.

“Canada’s health care environment is rapidly evolving. It is marked by a move of primary care into pharmacy and increasingly complex patient demand.”

The acquisition is subject to review under the Investment Canada Act and by the Competition Bureau of Canada. McKesson officials expect that the deal will close later this year.

Once the transaction is completed, Rexall Health will be folded into McKesson Canada within McKesson’s Distribution Solutions business segment, led by executive vice president and group president Paul Julian. Plans call for Rexall Health to retain its brand name and to have a dedicated management team in Canada led by current CEO Jürgen ­Schreiber.

“For over 100 years in Canada, McKesson has helped build a strong network of independent pharmacies,” said Alain Champagne, president of McKesson Canada. “With the acquisition of Rexall Health, McKesson will continue to deliver value-added pharmacy solutions through an expanded portfolio, while providing operational excellence to small-business owners, independent pharmacists and our pharmaceutical distribution ­customers.”


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