Clients Merrill Lynch & Co. and Deutsche Bank noted for Canadian retailer Jean Coutu Group's acquisition of Eckerd drugstores, as Investment Dealers' Digest, "Retail/Deal of the Year" for 2004

Clients Merrill Lynch & Co. and Deutsche Bank noted for Canadian retailer Jean Coutu Group's acquisition of Eckerd drugstores, as Investment Dealers' Digest, "Retail/Deal of the Year" for 2004

In its January 17th issue Investment Dealer's Digest, named J.C. Penney Co.'s sale of Eckerd Drug Stores to the Jean Coutu Group and CVS Corp. as the "Retail/Deal of the Year" for 2004. The article entitled "Penney's Eckerd Sale: A Two-for-One Deal," notes that "the deal required negotiating two simultaneous contracts - one stock sale, the other an asset sale - that split Eckerd's business almost down the middle .... Two buyers are better than one .... that's what J.C.Penney Co. discovered when it decided to divest itself of Eckerd Drug Stores, .... It wasn't until Canadian retailer Jean Coutu Group made two bids - one for the entirety of Eckerd and another for only its stores in the Northeast and Middle Atlantic states - that the idea it could get more by selling Eckerd to two buyers captured J.C. Penney's imagination .... In the end, J.C. Penney got much more for the business by selling 1,549 stores to Jean Coutu for $US2.4 billion and 1,260 stores plus its mail-order pharmacy to CVS for $US2.15 billion. The deal was announced April 5, and by the time it closed on July 31, the novel financial arrangement has reshaped the U.S. drugstore landscape .... Coutu increased its market share, becoming one of the top five drugstore chains in the country. The sale represented the largest U.S. retail pharmacy transaction in the last 10 years." [Jean Coutu's] financial advisor's .... [are] Merrill Lynch & Co. and Deutsche Bank [Merrill Lynch & Co. and Deutsche Bank are represented by Firm Partners Valerie Ford Jacob, Arthur Kaufman, Stuart Gelfond, Kenneth Blackman, John T. Boese, Meyer Last, Lisa Levy, Jonathan Lewis, Richard Schwartz and Gregg Weiner; and Special Counsel Edward Alterman, Joshua Wechsler, Pauline Wen and Frances Schreiber]

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