Walgreens Boots Alliance to purchase 2,186 stores, three distribution centers and related inventory from Rite Aid

New agreement replaces previous merger agreement with Rite Aid and proposed divestiture transaction with Fred’s

DEERFIELD, Ill., 2017-Jul-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (Nasdaq: WBA) announced today (June 29, 2017) a new definitive agreement with Rite Aid Corporation under which Walgreens Boots Alliance will purchase 2,186 stores, three distribution centers and related inventory from Rite Aid.

The consideration for the transaction will be $5.175 billion in cash, the assumption by Walgreens Boots Alliance of the related real estate leases and the grant of an option to Rite Aid, exercisable through May 2019 and subject to certain conditions, to become a member of Walgreens Boots Alliance’s group purchasing organization, Walgreens Boots Alliance Development GmbH. Walgreens Boots Alliance will also assume certain limited store-related liabilities as part of the new transaction.

This new agreement replaces the previous merger agreement with Rite Aid, announced in October 2015 and amended in January 2017, and the agreement to divest certain Rite Aid stores to Fred’s, Inc. announced in December 2016. Both of these agreements have been terminated, and Walgreens Boots Alliance will pay Rite Aid the $325 million termination fee with respect to their merger agreement.

The new transaction is subject to the expiration or termination of applicable waiting periods under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976, as amended, and other customary closing conditions. The initial closing of the new transaction is expected to occur within the next six months.

Upon the initial closing of the new transaction, Walgreens Boots Alliance will begin acquiring the stores and related assets on a phased basis over a period of approximately six months, and intends to convert acquired stores to the Walgreens brand over time.

Walgreens Boots Alliance expects the new transaction to be modestly accretive to its adjusted diluted net earnings per share in the first full year after the initial closing of the new transaction, and expects to realize synergies from the new transaction in excess of $400 million. These synergies are expected to be fully realized within three to four years of the initial closing of the new transaction and derived primarily from procurement, cost savings and other operational matters.

“This new transaction extends our growth strategy and offers additional operational and financial benefits,” said Walgreens Boots Alliance Executive Vice Chairman and CEO Stefano Pessina. “It will allow us to expand and optimize our retail pharmacy network in key markets in the U.S., including the Northeast, and provide customers and patients with greater access to convenient, affordable care. We believe this new transaction addresses competitive concerns previously raised with respect to the prior transaction and will streamline and simplify the transition for customers, team members and other stakeholders.”

Notes to Editors:

About Walgreens Boots Alliance

Walgreens Boots Alliance (Nasdaq: WBA) is the first global pharmacy-led, health and wellbeing enterprise.

The company was created through the combination of Walgreens and Alliance Boots in December 2014, bringing together two leading companies with iconic brands, complementary geographic footprints, shared values and a heritage of trusted health care services through pharmaceutical wholesaling and community pharmacy care, dating back more than 100 years.

Walgreens Boots Alliance is the largest retail pharmacy, health and daily living destination across the USA and Europe. Walgreens Boots Alliance and the companies in which it has equity method investments together have a presence in more than 25* countries and employ more than 400,000* people. The company is a global leader in pharmacy-led, health and wellbeing retail and, together with the companies in which it has equity method investments, has over 13,200* stores in 11* countries as well as one of the largest global pharmaceutical wholesale and distribution networks, with over 390* distribution centers delivering to more than 230,000** pharmacies, doctors, health centers and hospitals each year in more than 20* countries. In addition, Walgreens Boots Alliance is one of the world’s largest purchasers of prescription drugs and many other health and wellbeing products.

The company’s portfolio of retail and business brands includes Walgreens, Duane Reade, Boots and Alliance Healthcare, as well as increasingly global health and beauty product brands such as No7, Botanics, Liz Earle and Soap & Glory.

In October 2016 Walgreens Boots Alliance received the United Nations Foundation Global Leadership Award for its commitment to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. The company also ranks No. 1 in the Food and Drug Stores industry of Fortune magazine’s 2017 list of the World’s Most Admired Companies.

More company information is available at www.walgreensbootsalliance.com.

* As of 31 August 2016, using publicly available information for AmerisourceBergen.

** For 12 months ending 31 August 2016, using publicly available information for AmerisourceBergen.


Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements

All statements in this release that are not historical statements, which include, without limitation, those regarding the pending asset purchase agreement between Walgreens Boots Alliance and Rite Aid and the transactions contemplated thereby and the termination of the merger agreement with Rite Aid and the transactions contemplated thereby and the possible effects thereof, are forward-looking statements made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements include, but are not limited to, statements regarding the expected timing of the closing of the transactions contemplated by the pending asset purchase agreement between Walgreens Boots Alliance and Rite Aid and the transactions contemplated thereby, the ability of the parties to complete the transactions considering the various closing conditions, and the outcome of legal and regulatory matters, the termination of the merger agreement with Rite Aid and the transactions contemplated thereby (including the termination of the divestiture agreement to sell certain Rite Aid assets and stores to Fred’s, Inc.) and their possible effect. Words such as “expect,” “pending,” “potential”, “likely,” “preliminary,” “would,” “could,” “should,” “can,” “will,” “project,” “intend,” “plan,” “goal,” “continue,” “synergy,” “on track,” “believe,” “seek,” “estimate,” “anticipate,” “may,” “possible,” “assume,” and variations of such words and similar expressions are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to risks, uncertainties and assumptions, known or unknown, which could cause actual results to vary materially from those indicated or anticipated. Such risks include, but are not limited to, risks related to the proposed transactions and acquisitions generally, including the risk that the transactions may not close due to one or more closing conditions to the transactions not being satisfied or waived, such as certain regulatory approvals not being obtained, on a timely basis or otherwise, or that a governmental entity prohibited, delayed or refused to grant approval for the consummation of the transactions or required certain conditions, limitations or restrictions in connection with such approvals, risk that the business of Walgreens Boots Alliance or the Rite Aid stores proposed to be sold to Walgreens Boots Alliance may suffer as a result of uncertainty surrounding the transactions, risks related to the ability to realize the anticipated benefits of the proposed transactions, the outcome of legal and regulatory matters, including with respect to the outcome of discussions with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission and otherwise in connection with the pending acquisition of certain Rite Aid assets by Walgreens Boots Alliance, the risk of unexpected costs, liabilities or delays, changes in management’s assumptions, the risks associated with the integration of complex businesses, and risks associated with changes in laws, regulations or interpretations thereof. These and other risks, assumptions and uncertainties are described in Item 1A (Risk Factors) of Walgreens Boots Alliance’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended August 31, 2016, which is incorporated herein by reference, and in other documents that Walgreens Boots Alliance files or furnishes with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those indicated or anticipated by such forward-looking statements. Accordingly, you are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date they are made. Except to the extent required by law, Walgreens Boots Alliance does not undertake, and expressly disclaims, any duty or obligation to update publicly any forward-looking statement after the date of this release, whether as a result of new information, future events, changes in assumptions or otherwise.

SOURCE: Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc.


Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc.
Media Relations
USA / Michael Polzin
+1 847 315 2935

International / Laura Vergani
+44 (0)207 980 8585

Investor Relations
Gerald Gradwell and Ashish Kohli
+1 847 315 2922




British Land: Finastra to occupy three floors at 4 Kingdom Street, Paddington Central

British Land: Finastra to occupy three floors at 4 Kingdom Street, Paddington Central

London, 2017-Jul-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — British Land announces today (June 29, 2017) that it has let three floors at 4 Kingdom Street, Paddington Central, to software company Finastra, and the office space is now 89% let or under offer.

Finastra, formed in 2017 by the combination of Misys and D+H, develops software for financial institutions, including 48 of the world’s 50 largest banks. The company has signed a ten year lease to occupy the first, second and third floors at 4 Kingdom Street, totalling 42,400 sq ft.

The announcement follows the formal launch of 4 Kingdom Street on 28 June. The building, which provides 147,000 sq ft across nine floors, is the first building to be developed by British Land at Paddington Central. The building reached practical completion in April 2017.

On acquiring the campus 2013, British Land appointed architects Allies and Morrison to review and update an existing planning consent for 4 Kingdom Street. The revised design includes the relocation of the core to increase the openness and flexibility of the floorplates, the introduction of large outside terraces on Levels 2 to 9, and the creation of a ‘glass pod’ on each floor which provides flexible meeting space outside the main floorplate and offers views across west London.

The building also features an active roof terrace including a café, outdoor seating area and London’s highest basketball court.

Tim Roberts, Head of Offices and Residential at British Land, said: “It is a tremendous achievement to be 89 per cent let or under offer as we formally present the space to market.

“The commitment from Finastra and strength of interest in the other floors is an endorsement of our decision to re-configure the building to deliver greater flexibility, more collaborative spaces and a truly unique roof space, along with the substantial improvements we’ve made to the campus environment.

“We believe the delivery of 4 Kingdom Street is well-timed given the lack of supply in the West End market, and the arrival of Crossrail at Paddington in 2018, and hope to announce further occupier commitments in the near future.”

Paddington Central comprises 11 acres and is home to leading international businesses including Microsoft, Vodafone, Shire, VISA and Prudential.

British Land acquired part of the Paddington Central office campus for £470 million in 2013 and completed the purchase of One Sheldon Square for £210 million in 2015. Since then, the company has invested nearly £100 million in transforming of the public realm and the construction of 4 Kingdom Street.

In May al-fresco dining experience Pergola opened a new 850-capacity venue at Paddington Central, and British Land is continuing to develop a new retail and leisure offer at the campus.

Cushman & Wakefield and CBRE are the joint agents on 4 Kingdom Street. CBRE advised Finastra.

Notes to Editors

About British Land
Our portfolio of high quality UK commercial property is focused on Retail around the UK and London Offices. We own or manage a portfolio valued at £19.1 billion (British Land share: £13.9 billion) as at 31 March 2017 making us one of Europe’s largest listed real estate investment companies.

Our strategy is to provide places which meet the needs of our customers and respond to changing lifestyles – Places People Prefer. We do this by creating great environments both inside and outside our buildings and use our scale and placemaking skills to enhance and enliven them. This expands their appeal to a broader range of occupiers, creating enduring demand and driving sustainable, long term performance.

Our Retail portfolio is focused on Regional and Local multi-let centres, and accounts for 48% of our portfolio. Our Offices portfolio comprises three office-led campuses in central London as well as high quality standalone buildings and accounts for 49% of our portfolio. Increasingly our focus is on providing a mix of uses and this is most evident at Canada Water, our 46 acre redevelopment opportunity where we have plans to create a new neighbourhood for London.

Sustainability is embedded throughout our business. Our places, which are designed to meet high sustainability standards, become part of local communities, provide opportunities for skills development and employment and promote wellbeing. Our industry-leading sustainability performance led to British Land being named a European Sector Leader in the 2016 Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark for the third year running.

In April 2016 British Land received the Queen’s Award for Enterprise: Sustainable Development, the UK’s highest accolade for business success for economic, social and environmental achievements over a period of five years.

Further details can be found on the British Land website at www.britishland.com.

SOURCE: British Land

Media Contact:

Andrew Scorgie
FTI Consulting
020 3727 1458




Whole Foods Market earns the Cage-Free Award from Compassion in World Farming

AUSTIN, Texas, 2017-Jul-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — Today (June 28, 2017) Whole Foods Market receives the Cage-Free Award from Compassion in World Farming (CIFW), an international nonprofit that promotes farm animal welfare and consumer transparency.

Whole Foods Market representatives will accept the award at CIFW’s annual Good Farm Animal Welfare Awards ceremony, which recognizes industry leaders for policies and commitments that result in better animal welfare across supply chains.

Whole Foods Market is honored to receive this award in recognition of our animal welfare standards that prohibit cages of all types for animals,” said Liz Fry, Whole Foods Market’s global quality standards coordinator for animal products. “We’re proud that our partnerships with innovative, forward-thinking producers have led to changes in the way farm animals are raised. It’s been both rewarding and exciting, and we look forward to continuing to set the bar in the industry.”

The Cage-Free Award recognizes leading food companies that are taking steps to end the use of cages across supply chains. In 2002, Whole Foods Market banned cages for any animal raised for meat production, and in 2004, began requiring that all eggs sold in store come from cage-free hens. Most recently, the company announced new egg standards for its 365 Everyday Value eggs, providing additional requirements for the comfort, physical safety and health of the birds.

Find out more about Whole Foods Market’s mission and values at wholefoodsmarket.com/our-mission-values.

SOURCE: Whole Foods Market

Global Press Contacts:

WFM Media

Whole Foods Market announces new Whole Foods Market 365 store in Weehawken, New Jersey

ENGLEWOOD CLIFFS, N.J., 2017-Jul-02 — /EPR Retail News/ — Whole Foods Market announced it has signed a new lease for a Whole Foods Market 365 store in Weehawken, New Jersey. This will be the first Whole Foods Market 365 location in New Jersey. The news was announced this morning during a groundbreaking ceremony in Lincoln Harbor at the corner of Waterfront Terrace and Riverview Drive.

“We are excited to announce that our region’s second Whole Foods Market 365 store will be located in Hudson County,” said Christina Minardi, president of Whole Foods Market’s Northeast Region. “Our 365 stores deliver the same quality that our customers have come to expect, but in a convenient and fun new format that provides exceptional value.”

The retailer announced earlier this year that it had signed its first New York 365 store lease in Fort Greene, Brooklyn.

Whole Foods Market 365 stores focus on an affordable and convenient shopping experience through design, technology and customer experience. The carefully curated product selection at Whole Foods Market 365 stores provides a streamlined and modern experience, while still adhering to Whole Foods Market’s industry-leading quality standards.

Customers can also look forward to unique in-store experiences with the “Friends of 365” program, and the free 365 Rewards program to save even more.

For more, visit the Whole Foods Market 365 website, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

SOURCE: Whole Foods Market

Global Press Contacts:

WFM Media