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'Negative' funding continues to impact Boots pharmacy sales

Boots' parent company has blamed “negative” pharmacy funding in the UK for its continued drop in sales.

Walgreens Boots Alliance said its retail pharmacy international division – which includes Boots UK – has seen sales in pharmacies drop by 0.1% in the three months to May 31, compared with the same period last year.

This is “primarily due to the negative impact of pharmacy funding the UK”, the health and beauty giant said in its latest financial report, published this afternoon (June 29).

However, “comparable retail sales” increased by 0.4%, Walgreens Boots Alliance pointed out, “reflecting growth in the UK”.

The slight drop in pharmacy sales is a significant improvement on the three months to February 28, when its retail pharmacy international division recorded a 3.7% drop in pharmacy sales, compared to the same period in 2015-16.

Wholesale growth

The group's wholesale division recorded a 3.7% sales increase. This was “ahead of the company’s estimate” and reflects “growth in emerging markets and the UK”, the business said in its report.

Walgreens Boots Alliance CEO Stefano Pessina said the group’s overall results “continue to meet our expectations” and the business “remain[s] confident in the long-term growth of the company”.

Last week, Lloydspharmacy's parent company Celesio UK said its "significant" 29.1% drop in earnings was a result of last year's category M clawback and funding cuts in England.

How are the funding cuts affecting your pharmacy?

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