DSN poll: Walgreens' acquisition of Rite Aid to be approved by Friday


NEW YORK  — Almost half (48%) of the more-than 200 DSN readers who weighed in on when the Walgreens Boots Alliance/Rite Aid deal would be approved are laying odds that it will happen before the inauguration of President-Elect Donald Trump.

That's in three days.

In a recent news article on the subject — a January 15 profile of Walgreens Boots Alliance CEO Stefano Pessina  — The Financial Times posits the approval as a foregone conclusion: "The pharmacy chain is poised to become bigger still if U.S. regulators allow the company to acquire rival U.S. pharmacy group RiteAid, with a final decision expected in days. If consummated, it would seal Mr. Pessina’s reputation as a serial dealmaker."

Still, a third of readers (33%) believe the deal will be approved, but long after this Friday and almost 1-in-5 (19%), believe the deal will be axed even under a Republican administration that would theoretically be more amenable to big mergers.

If approved, the new Walgreens network will total some 11,857 U.S. locations, which will be almost 25% larger than the store base of its nearest competitor CVS Health. The deal will set in motion immediate synergies as the leading U.S. pharmacy retailer creates a national network focused on delivering health care and beauty, Walgreens' leaders shared with analysts last week.


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