The US drugs store giant Walgreens announced Wednesday it will buy the remaining 55 percent of Alliance Boots in a deal worth at least $5.29 billion, the latest big move in the pharmaceuticals industry.
Walgreens in 2012 acquired 45 percent of Alliance Boots -- a household name in Britain -- and had three years to exercise an option to snap up the rest. Walgreens announced that it hoped to finalize the latest transaction in the first quarter of 2015.
The new Walgreens Boots Alliance holding company will be based in Chicago, Walgreens said, hailing it as "the first global pharmacy-led, health and wellbeing enterprise."
"We are excited to move forward with the next important step in becoming a new kind of global health care leader," said Walgreens president and CEO Greg Wasson.
"Expanding globally with Alliance Boots will make quality health care more affordable and accessible to communities here in America and around the world."