Boots’ owner has announced a mid-May deadline for bidders’ £5bn bids

Boots’ owner has announced a mid-May deadline for bidders’ £5bn bids

by Pranali Mehta

The owner of the British health and beauty retailer, Boots, has reportedly announced a mid-May deadline for final bids from suitors for the British high street pharmacist as it focuses on addressing a slew of economic headwinds that threaten to reduce its valuation.

As per reports, advisers of the Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) at Goldman Sachs have asked bidders looking to acquire the business that it is looking for formal proposals on May 16.

With a few potential parties discouraged by WBA's price expectations, in addition to the concern of inflation and other cost challenges, projected to impede near-term financial performance of Boots, less than a few of bids are expected to be submitted by the deadline.

Closing offers are anticipated from billionaire Issa brothers-owned Asda and TDR Capital, as well as Apollo Global Management.

However, it is unlikely that Reliance Industries, the Indian giant, will make a stand-alone proposal.

Bidders will also have to overcome tough financing markets, along with finding a suitable solution for Boots' £8 billion pension scheme, which is among the biggest private retirement funds in Britain.

Earlier this year, sources reported that an unexpected frontrunner in the Boots bidding, a joint proposal from CVC Capital Partners and Bain Capital, had decided not to pursue due to skepticism about the £6 billion price tag.

Boots, like many other retailers, has been through a difficult period, with the company declaring 4000 job layoffs in 2020 as a result of a restructure of its Nottingham headquarters and store management staff.

It's also engaged in a fight with landlords over late rent payments.

Boots had planned to close roughly 200 of its UK outlets right before the COVID-19 pandemic, owing to changing buying trends.

The firm’s history stretches back to 1849, when John Boot opened an herbal remedies shop in Nottingham. In 1933, the company established its 1000th store in the United Kingdom.

A move to sell Boots will be the closing chapter in Stefano Pessina's tenure with one of Britain's most well-known corporations.

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Pranali Mehta

A chemical engineer by qualification, Pranali Mehta dutifully walked down the slated path and worked in a chemical firm for a year. Her passion for writing however, pushed her into experimenting with the same as a career. With over three years of experience in content writ Read more...