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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

CVS Plans To Stop Selling Tobacco

The change will go into effect in October.

Starting October 1, CVS and its 7,600 stores across the country will no longer sell tobacco products. CVS President and CEO Larry Merlo said the change is the next step in the company's growth.

"When we asked ourselves where we expect to be in the future as a healthcare company, it became clear that removing tobacco products from our stores is the right thing to do," said Merlo.

Smokers and non-smokers who shop at CVS expressed their concern.

In 2012, CVS's total revenues topped more than 100 billion dollars. According to CVS, the company expects to lose around 2 billion dollars annually in tobacco sales, but executives say the image change is worth the lost profits.

USC Marketing Professor Ira Kalb approved of the change. "I think what they're really thinking about is their brand image," he said. "That's what they're focusing on with this move."

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