Walgreen Co. (NYSE: WAG) reported Tuesday that its first-quarter profit rose to $603 million, or 65 cents a share, from $463 million, or 47 cents a share, in the prior-year quarter. Revenue rose 6.8 percent to $18.38 billion from $17.20 billion. Analysts, on average, expect the company to report earnings of 62 cents per share on revenue of $18.33 billion.
The company also said that contract renewal negotiations with pharmacy benefit manager Express Scripts, Inc. (NASDAQ: ESRX) have been unsuccessful, and as a result the company is planning not to be part of Express Scripts' pharmacy provider network as of Jan. 1, 2012. "While we have sought to negotiate a contract renewal agreement over the past several months, those talks have been unsuccessful," said Walgreens President and CEO Greg Wasson. "Under the terms proposed by Express Scripts, it would not make good business sense for the strategic direction of our company to continue our relationship with them."
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