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Boots owner agrees £4.8bn sale of Alliance Healthcare majority stake

Henry Saker-Clark, PA City Reporter
·2-min read

Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) has agreed a 6.5 billion-dollar (£4.8 billion) deal to sell the majority of its Alliance Healthcare wholesale and distribution business.

The Boots owner has said it agreed a deal to sell the business, previously called Alliance UniChem, to US drug wholesaler AmerisourceBergen.

It said the buyer will acquire the majority stake for 6.275 billion dollars in cash and two million AmerisourceBergen shares.

WBA told investors on Wednesday that the sale will allow it to increase its focus on its core retail pharmacy business.

It added that Alliance Healthcare UK will remain as Boots’s distribution partner until 2031, despite the sale.

In the US, Alliance will continue its distribution partnership for WBA until 2029.

WBA is the largest investor in AmerisourceBergen, owning an almost 30% stake, after the companies launched a partnership in 2013.

Stefano Pessina, executive vice chairman and chief executive officer of WBA, said: “This strategic agreement with AmerisourceBergen, which we consider to be the world’s leading pharmaceutical wholesaler, is a very positive development for the two companies.

“This deal will enable significant value creation for both companies and will generate new synergies in addition to those already captured.

“It is a logical step following the success of our long-term strategic relationship with AmerisourceBergen which has been a strong and trusted partner since 2013.”

Steven Collis, chairman, president and chief executive officer of AmerisourceBergen, said: “AmerisourceBergen’s financial and strategic position enable this next evolution of enhancing our ability to provide healthcare capabilities across regions and deliver innovative solutions for our upstream and downstream partners.

“Today’s announcements will expand our reach and solutions in pharmaceutical distribution and add to AmerisourceBergen’s breadth and depth of global manufacturer services, supporting our ability to create differentiated value for all our stakeholders.”