Crain’s Headlines: Walgreens Explores Deal to Take Company Private

Walgreens has been exploring a potential deal to take the company private in what could become the largest leveraged buyout in history.

That’s according to unnamed sources quoted Tuesday by Bloomberg News Service.

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The drugstore chain has recently held informal talks with private equity firms to feel them out about the prospects of taking the publicly traded company private. CEO Stefano Pessina is Walgreens’ largest shareholder with a stake of about 16%. The Deerfield-based company, which operates Walgreens stores in the U.S. and Boots stores overseas, currently has a market value of about $57 billion.

In other Chicago-area news:

Boeing’s new chairman says the aerospace giant’s embattled CEO, Dennis Muilenburg, will forgo his bonus this year.

Muilenburg will waive his 2019 bonus and decline equity grants for at least a year until the 737 Max fleet is flying again. The 737 Max has been grounded worldwide since two fatal crashes that killed 346 people.

The board’s decision means Muilenburg will likely lose out on at least $10 million – and possibly significantly more – in his 2019 compensation. In 2018, Muilenburg’s pay package totaled more than $23 million.

And finally, Allstate is hiking insurance rates for Illinois homeowners.

Prices are rising an average of 8% early next year for most homeowners covered by Allstate. That’s the biggest rate hike in recent years.

The Northbrook-based insurer’s move affects nearly 200,000 policyholders statewide. And it follows an increase of more than 5% last year.

Crain’s Headlines is a joint production between WTTW and Crain’s Chicago Business. It airs every Monday through Thursday on the WTTW News program “Chicago Tonight.” 

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