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Walgreens presses pause on plans for Boots IPO

By Vivian Hendriksz


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Walgreens store, California Credits: Walgreens Boots Alliance

Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. (WBA.O) has reportedly shelved its plans for a potential initial public offering (IPO) of UK-based drugstore chain Boots as it continues to explore other opportunities. 

On Friday afternoon, Bloomberg News reported that Walgreens Boots Alliance was continuing “informal talks with potential buyers” for Boots, which includes private equity firms, that had been taking place over the last few weeks.

Insiders familiar with the situation indicated that hopes for a blockbuster listing, which could rejuvenate the London stock market, have been dashed.

The Bloomberg News report noted that discussions are still in progress, and Walgreens has yet to reach a definitive decision regarding the future ownership of Boots. 

The media company previously reported that any potential deal for Boots could value the company at approximately 7 billion pounds.

In early 2022, Walgreens confirmed that it was “exploring strategic options” for Boots as it sought to build its healthcare business within the United States. Later in the year, Walgreens is said to have abandoned plans to sell the UK drugstore chain.

However, Walgreens rekindled talks about separating Boots in 2023 and said it was considering options such as a potential IPO in London.

Walgreens Boots Alliance