Rank: 21 (Previous rank: 19)
CEO: George S. Barrett
Was this company a 2011 top stock?
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Despite its slim operating margins, which are endemic to the drug distribution industry, Ohio-based Cardinal Health pulled off an impressive 2011, with net revenues and income up from the previous year. Cardinal also made progress toward expanding the number of independent retail pharmacies it works with by acquiring drug distributor Kinray for $1.3 billion, a move it announced in November 2010.
The company made further inroads into the fast-growing Chinese pharmaceuticals market, with the purchase of drug distributor Yong Yu in 2010 for $470 million and the opening of a logistics center in Shanghai in 2011.
This year, Cardinal Health has come under fire amid allegations by the Drug Enforcement Administration that the drug distributor has not done enough to prevent the abuse of prescription painkillers like oxycodone. In February, the DEA suspended Cardinal's license to distribute controlled medicines out of its Lakeland, Fla., hub. Cardinal disputes the agency's claims.
Industry: Wholesalers: Health Care