Boots could close over 200 stores in cost-cutting bid for its US owner Walgreens, according to reports

Boots are considering closing more than 200 stores to slash costs. Picture: Yui Mok/PA Wire
Boots are considering closing more than 200 stores to slash costs. Picture: Yui Mok/PA Wire
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THE owner of Boots the chemist is considering closing more than 200 stores across the country, according to reports. 

Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA), which is based out of Deerfield, Illinois, announced earlier this year that it had started taking ‘decisive steps’ to cut costs in the UK. 

The company, which also owns the Walgreens pharmaceutical chain in America, is reportedly considering closing over 200 Boots stores in the UK. 

This afternoon, Sky News tweeted: ‘Sky Sources say the U.S.- based owner of Boots The Chemist is considering closing more than 200 of its UK stores.’ 

Boots has sites in Cosham High Street, Commercial Road and London Road in Portsmouth as well as in Gosport, Fareham, Havant and Waterlooville. 

READ MORE: Boots considering store closures amid cost-cutting plans

In April WBA revealed that it is looking at poor performing shops as well ‘opportunities for consolidation’.

It is also said to be looking at ways to overhaul its pharmacy business.

The company reported a 2.3 per cent drop in like-for-like UK retail sales in its second quarter to February 28, while comparable pharmacy sales dropped 1.5 per cent.

READ MORE: Debenhams in Southsea set to close in 2020

Tough trading in the US also saw the wider group warn over full-year earnings, with boss Stefano Pessina branding it the ‘most difficult quarter we have had since the formation of Walgreens Boots Alliance’.

WBA was formed in 2014 after Walgreens agreed to purchases the remaining 55 per cent of Boots that it did not already own.