HR staff at health and beauty chains Boots and Alliance UniChem face an uncertain future after the two firms unveiled merger plans in a deal worth £7bn.
The merger will create one of Europe’s largest drugs, beauty and healthcare groups with sales of more than £13bn. The combined company – to be called Alliance Boots – will own 2,600 stores across UK.
Boots has 68,000 staff and Alliance UniChem has 33,000, but thousands of jobs – particularly in adminstration and distribution – will be at risk, after the two companies proposed annual savings of about £100m.
However, the deal could be referrred to the Competition Commission, because the merged group would have 40% of the UK’s drug supply market and would own 17% of UK pharmacies.
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