Walgreens pushs back deadline, lowers price for Rite Aid

Markets Associated Press

FILE - In this June 4, 2014, file photo, a person walks by a Walgreens retail store in Boston. Walgreens and Rite Aid are scrapping their acquisition agreement for an amended deal that calls for a lower price and the sale of up to 1,200 stores to ... ease regulatory worries about competition. The drugstore chains said Monday, Jan. 30, 2017, that Walgreens will buy shares of Rite Aid for $6.50 to $7 per share, depending on how many stores they need to divest. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, File) (The Associated Press)

Walgreens is lowering the price it will pay to buy drugstore rival Rite Aid and raising the number of stores it will unload to ease monopoly concerns.

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The companies initially planned to sell no more than 500 stores, but that was pushed to 1,200 Monday.

Walgreens will now spend between $6.50 to $7 per share of shares of Rite Aid, depending on how many stores they need to divest. Walgreens originally planned to pay $9 per share for the nation's third-largest drugstore chain in a roughly $9.4 billion deal announced in the fall of 2015.

The deadline to complete the deal, which expired last week, was extended to the end of July.

Shares of Rite Aid Corp. tumbled 16 percent to $5.81, while Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. are up slightly.