LONDON — The U.K. daily the Telegraph on Monday reported conjecture that Walgreens may seek to pull the trigger on the second step in its acquisition of Alliance Boots sooner rather than later. According to the report, Walgreens could acquire the remaining stake in Alliance Boots in as little as eight months. Presently, Walgreens has an option to acquire the remaining stake in Alliance Boots beginning February 2015.
Walgreens currently holds a 45% stake in Alliance Boots.
According to the report, the deal would be accelerated in an effort to begin an inversion, relocating Walgreens headquarters from the Chicago area to overseas.
However, in an email to Drug Store News last week, Walgreens spokesman Michael Polzin said, "The window for step two of the [Alliance Boots] transaction begins in February 2015. The current agreement doesn't allow for a move prior to that."
Regarding a possible inversion, Polzin said, "We regularly meet with our investors and always welcome their input. Over the past year, we have made significant progress in our strategic partnership with Alliance Boots as we move toward the window for exercising the second step of our transaction. Our focus is always on analyzing and doing what is in the best long-term interest of our company and its shareholders, and when we have something more definitive to announce about our future structure and strategies, we will do so."