Walgreens to retain UK’s Boots biz

The company put its Boots business up for sale after announcing a strategic review in January as the second-largest U.S. pharmacy chain renewed its focus on the domestic healthcare.
Representative image
Representative image

LONDON: Walgreens Boots Alliance on Tuesday scrapped its plan to sell its UK high street pharmacy chain, Boots, saying no third party was able to make an adequate offer due to the turmoil in the global financial markets.

The company put its Boots business up for sale after announcing a strategic review in January as the second-largest U.S. pharmacy chain renewed its focus on the domestic healthcare.

The decision to retain Boots and No7 Beauty Company has also been supported by their ongoing strong performance, Walgreens said.

The announcement comes at a time when a news reported on Sunday said Reliance Industries is in talks with several global banks to raise as much as $8 billion for its planned leveraged buyout of Walgreens Boots Alliance’s international arm.

The 173-year-old Boots business includes 2,200 stores in the United Kingdom, including pharmacies, health and beauty stores.

The company sold its distribution business for $6.5 billion to US drug wholesaler AmerisourceBergen last year.

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