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Walgreens Boots Agrees to $6.5 Billion Healthcare Sale to AmerisourceBergen

Dow component Walgreens Boots said Wednesday it will sell a majority stake in its healthcare distribution business to AmerisourceBergen Corp for $6.5 billion.

Walgreens Boots Alliance  (WBA) - Get Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. Report agreed Wednesday to sell its healthcare distribution business to AmerisourceBergen Corp.  (ABC) - Get AmerisourceBergen Corporation Report for around $6.5 billion. 

Walgreens said the majority-cash deal will allow it to focus on its core retail pharmacy business while strengthening and expanding its partnership with AmerisourceBergen. Walgreens will receive $6.275 billion in cash and 2 million shares in AmerisourceBergen common stock for the sale of its Alliance Healthcare business, the companies 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," said Walgreens CEO Stefano Pessina. "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.” 

“The transaction will fuel higher future investments to grow and transform our core retail pharmacy and healthcare businesses, and is EPS accretive long-term for Walgreens Boots Alliance,” he added.

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Dow component Walgreens Boots Alliance shares were marked 2.7% higher in early trading following news of the healthcare division sale to  change hands at $42.28 each. AmerisourceBerge shares, meanwhile, jumped 7.8% to $105.42 each, a move that would put the stock into positive territory over the past six months.

Walgreens said in October that its business will "continue to be negatively impacted when compared with pre-COVID-19 levels" in the first half of the year, but still forecasts low-single digit profit growth for 2021.