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Boots' parent company exploring private buyout, says Reuters

Boots' parent company is exploring the possibility of a buyout to become a private company, Reuters has reported.

Walgreens Boots Alliance has held “preliminary discussions with some of the world’s largest private equity firms” about the proposed buyout, said Reuters, citing “people familiar with the matter”.

If successful, it would be the “biggest ever leveraged buyout”, Reuters said on Tuesday (November 5).

However, “many” private equity firms have “pushed back on the idea” due to concerns “about Walgreens’ business prospects and the challenges of financing the deal”, Reuters claimed.

Walgreens Boots Alliance declined to comment to C+D.

Even though overall sales for June-August across Walgreens Boots Alliance increased 2.6%, to $34 billion (£26.5bn), compared with the same period last year, adjusted operating income across the group fell 11.1%, the company said in its latest financial results, published last month.

Income drop and pharmacy closures

The business’s adjusted operating income in its retail pharmacy international division – which includes Boots UK – fell to $194 million (£150.7m) for the same period.

Boots is “on track” to close the remaining 182 of a planned 200 branches before September 2020, it said last month.

What do you think about a planned buyout of Walgreens Boots Alliance?

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