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Citing ‘Market Instability,’ Walgreens Decides Not to Sell UK Retailer Boots

Walgreens Boots Alliance will be keeping the Boots in its name for a while longer.

Walgreens Boost Alliance (WBA) has decided not sell its Boots and No7 Beauty Company businesses, keeping the combined company intact for now.

The company had announced that it was exploring strategic alternatives for the UK-based businesses in January 2022 as it turned its attentions to “focusing our portfolio, optimizing our capital allocation and accelerating our transformation to healthcare.”

But, as a company statement pointed out, market conditions have shifted dramatically in the last six months. Despite “productive discussions” with a range of parties and “significant interest from prospective buyers,” WBA said current market instability was impacting the availability of financing, and as a result “no third party has been able to make an offer that adequately reflects the high potential value of Boots and No7 Beauty Company.”

Instead, WBA has decided to keep both Boots and No7 under their existing ownership, for now at least, and find ways to focus on growth and profitability opportunities.

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“We have now completed a thorough review of Boots and No7 Beauty Company, with the outcome reflecting rapidly evolving and challenging financial market conditions beyond our control,” said Rosalind Brewer WBA CEO in the statement. “It is an exciting time for these businesses, which are uniquely positioned to continue to capture future opportunities presented by the growing healthcare and beauty markets. The Board and I remain confident that Boots and No7 Beauty Company hold strong fundamental value, and longer term, we will stay open to all opportunities to maximize shareholder value for these businesses and across our company.”

Walgreens acquired Alliance Boots in 2014 and subsequently renamed the joint company. In 2021, WBA spun off Boots’ private label beauty brand No7 into its own standalone company.

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