Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. (NASDAQ: WBA) has acquired regulatory approval for a deal to purchase Rite Aid Corp. stores after three attempts. 1,932 Rite Aid stores will be acquired for $4.38 billion which is about 250 fewer stores than a previous proposal totaling to $5.18 billion. With the addition of the Rite Aid stores, Walgreens will own about 10,000 locations in the U.S.
In October 2015, Walgreens initially proposed to acquire Rite Aid for $9 a share which is equivalent to $9.4 billion, but the FTC had many concerns that the acquisition would hurt competition. Following that proposal, another merger plan was requested where 1,200 Rite Aid locations would be sold to another buyer which was worth at least $2 billion less to Rite Aid shareholders. This plan would’ve cost Walgreens almost $7.37 billion but did not get approved by the FTC which then lead to the terminated plan in June. The third request would cost Walgreens $5.18 billion to acquire 2,186 stores leaving Rite Aid a stand alone company. However, the FTC still wasn’t satisfied leading to the final deal announced on Tuesday where there are now 12% fewer stores and a lower price.