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Walgreens plans to shutter 200 drug stores

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DEERFIELD, Ill. — As part of its “transformational cost management program” announced last December, Walgreens Boots Alliance plans to close 200 stores in the United States after a review of its store network. The closures amount to less than 3% of its 9,560-plus locations in this country.

In an 8-K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Walgreens estimates that the transformational cost management program will result in cumulative pretax charges of approximately $1.9 billion to $2.4 billion, of which $1.6 billion to $2 billion is expected to be recorded as exit and disposal activities. The company further calculates that about 80% of the total charges will result in cash expenditures, mainly related to lease and other real estate payments, employee severance and technology costs stemming from the company’s IT ­transformation.

“As previously announced, we are undertaking a transformational cost management program to accelerate the ongoing transformation of our business, enable investments in key areas and to become a more efficient enterprise,” the company stated.

The announcement of the U.S. store closures follows the May declaration that 200 stores in the United Kingdom would be shuttered. In a statement to the media, Walgreens said it anticipates “minimal disruption to customers and patients” and expects to retain the majority of store associates affected by reassigning them to other ­locations.


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