Walgreens Boots Alliance has sold some AmerisourceBergen (NYSE:ABC) Corp’s shares for proceeds of $1 billion, the U.S. drugstore chain said on Thursday, further cutting its ownership in the drug distributor, by 3% to about 17%. Walgreens, which will remain AmerisourceBergen’ largest shareholder, said it would use the proceeds to pay down debt and to fund strategic priorities, including Walgreens-backed VillageMD’s $9 billion acquisition of urgent care provider Summit Health. Walgreens had earlier committed $3.5 billion, through an even mix of debt and equity, to support the deal, which was struck on Nov. 7. A day later, Walgreens said it cut its stake in AmerisourceBergen (ABC) to about 20% from about 26% though a public offering of 10 million ABC shares. The latest share sale includes $200 million that ABC will buy back from Walgreens under its share repurchase program, ABC said in a separate press release, adding these shares would be held in treasury. The share sale has no impact on the long-term partnership between the two companies, Walgreens said.
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