CVS Drops Cigs

CVS, "Thanks, we love you!"
So everybody's making a big deal about the CVS drug store chain decision to phase out the sale of cigarettes and tobacco products. The "thinking" is that the blessed folks at CVS care about us and they don't want to sell us something that may be bad for our health. That's nice. We are told that CVS will lose more than a billion dollars in revenue. What I want to know is about profit. Was CVS profiting or losing on their tobacco sales. That's a major part of the story and it has been ignored.

CVS cares about our health? That's marvelous public relations! I don't believe it, but if you believe it, I have a question for you. Would this make you more likely to shop at CVS than say Walgreen's or Osco? If your answer is YES, than maybe CVS has hit a PR home run. They decide to drop a retail product, they get millions of dollars of FREE media coverage (advertising) and they get to be portrayed in a positive light. That's win, win and win for CVS - splendid! I may be all wet, here, but I'm not sure.
I'll be back right after I step outside for a smoke...

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