NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Walgreen (WAG) shares are up 5.1% to $71.63 on Thursday after the company announced that CEO Greg Wasson plans to retire following the completion of the second phase of the company's merger with European drugstore chain Alliance Boots.
"When I became CEO six years ago, I had three goals - to transform the front end of Walgreens drugstores, to advance the role that community pharmacy plays in health care and to find the right partner to take Walgreens global. It is now time for new leadership to move that vision forward building on the global platform we have created," said Wasson.
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Stefano Pessina, executive chairman of Alliance Boots, will serve as the company's acting CEO while Walgreen's board searches for a permanent replacement.
Walgreen, the largest drug retailing chain in the country, operates 8,229 stores while Alliance Boots is the largest drugstore chain in the U.K. The company's board is expected to vote on the second step of the deal on December 29.
TheStreet has further coverage of the announcement here.
TheStreet Ratings team rates WALGREEN CO as a Buy with a ratings score of B. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation: