CVS to Launch Internet Prescription Sales With Purchase of Soma.com

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Drugstore chain CVS, Woonsocket, RI, agreed to acquire online pharmacy Soma.com, Seattle, for about $30 million in stock in an agreement that marks the most aggressive move yet by a major brick-and-mortar drugstore chain into Web-based prescription sales.


CVS said yesterday it would lend its marketing expertise and its affiliations with insurance providers to help grow Soma.com, which began filling prescriptions online in January. CVS, which had not been expected to launch an online arm until later this year, said it would benefit from the Internet and fulfillment infrastructure established by Soma.com.


CVS, which operates 4,100 stores throughout the Midwest and East, also said it would expand the range of products offered by Soma.com and would begin offering more personalized services, such as individualized health pages, tailored health management programs and health assessment services. The move will allow CVS to market products and services "on a more targeted and relationship-oriented basis," the chain said.
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