U.S. giant Walgreens is expected to announce a close to £6 billion ($10.1 billion) deal to buy the remaining stake in U.K. drugstore chain Alliance Boots on Wednesday morning.
The company confirmed that there would be “several updates” related to the long-anticipated transaction in an announcement at 6 a.m. ET Wednesday. This is expected to include the purchase of the 55 percent of the company, a U.K. high street staple, which Walgreens does not already own.
What’s possibly more surprising is that it is unlikely to include plans for a controversial tax inversion, according to one source. Walgreens had been tipped as the next big U.S. company to try and cut its tax bill by taking over a European company and relocating its headquarters.
Such deals are under a political shadow in the U.S., with President Barack Obama openly backing a bill to claim back some of the tax saved through previous deals, which is currently deadlocked in Congress. Many large corporates have responded by calling for the U.S. tax system to be reformed.
Walgreens bought 45 percent of Alliance Boots in 2012, and will now try to complete its full takeover between February and April 2015. It will gain a stronger international presence, and possibly the largest pharmaceutical distribution network in the world, as a result.
See more at: http://www.cnbc.com/id/101897578