United, Associated become American Associated Pharmacies

SCOTTSBORO, Ala —United Drugs and Associated Pharmacies doubled their respective sizes in September 2009 when they completed their collective merger to form American Associated Pharmacies.

Since the merger, the two companies have continued operating under their own names, despite their common corporate umbrella, appointing Jon Copeland as president and CEO of the combined company, while United Drugs CEO Bruce Semingson has assumed the role of COO.

AAP now has independent pharmacies in its network spread across every state except North Dakota. One reason for the merger was that API had a warehouse while United Drugs did not, but the cooperatively owned warehouse now can provide discounts on selected branded, generic and over-the-counter drugs for 2,000 pharmacies. In addition, members have access to the latest technological advances in pharmacy, political advocacy and a resource for education on the latest pharmacy trends and information, such as guidance on average wholesale price issues and how to avoid a pharmacy benefit manager audit for Medicare Part D claims.

In January, AAP made a deal with Cardinal Health that would make Cardinal the exclusive pharmaceutical distributor for its stores nationwide, though Cardinal previously had signed separate exclusive distribution agreements with API and United Drugs, before the merger. The new deal, which began Jan. 1, solidified the partnership.

“Since API and United Drugs joined together in September [2009], we have been very active restablishing our new parent company, AAP, while also focusing on ways to strengthen our well-established relationships with Cardinal Health,” Copeland said. “Throughout the entire process, we’ve had only one goal: the greater success of our members. Now, with AAP’s new agreement with Cardinal Health, we’ve made a giant step toward achieving that goal.”