Walgreens, AmerisourceBergen reportedly end takeover discussions with no deal

Deerfield, Ill.-based Walgreens Boots Alliance and AmerisourceBergen have reportedly ended acquisition discussions without an agreement, sources familiar with the matter told CNBC.

Walgreens currently owns 26 percent of Amerisource, one of the nation's largest drug distributors. In early February, Walgreens Executive Vice Chairman and CEO Stefano Pessina and Amerisource President and CEO Steven Collis reportedly met to discuss the potential acquisition, in which Walgreens would purchase the remainder of company. However, the two parties failed to come to an agreement, sources told CNBC.

Had it been successful, the proposed merger would have been worth more than $25 billion.

The sources, who sought to remain anonymous, told CNBC talks between the two organizations may resume in the future.

The move comes as drugstore owners scramble to remain competitive as external disruptors enter the healthcare arena. In December 2017, Walgreen's rival CVS Health inked a $69 billion deal to acquire health insurer Aetna. In addition, drug retailers are bracing for Amazon's next move into the drug retail space. The e-commerce giant launched its own exclusive over-the-counter product line, Basic Care, last August, and announced a partnership with Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Chase to lower the cost of healthcare for its employees.

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