Walgreens cuts 5% of corporate staff members

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Walgreens Boots Alliance is undergoing a workforce reduction, with 267 corporate employees, accounting for 5% of the corporate workforce, facing layoffs. The decision is part of the company’s efforts to streamline operations and prioritise critical initiatives to better serve patients and customers. Notably, the affected roles are not based at Walgreens stores. The company expressed gratitude for the contributions of departing team members and committed to supporting them during the transition.

Among the personnel changes, Chief Medical Officer Kevin Ban and Chief of Staff to the CEO Luke Sauter are reported to be departing. Sashi Moodley, Chief Clinical Officer, is expected to take over Ban’s role. These leadership changes follow the departure of former CEO Rosalind Brewer in August, with Tim Wentworth introduced as the new CEO during the October earnings call.

These moves are part of Walgreens’ broader cost-reduction initiative, aiming to cut more than $1 billion in 2024. The company also plans to close 60 healthcare clinics in unprofitable markets. Interim CEO Ginger Graham highlighted the need to adapt to financial challenges, including lower volumes of COVID-19 vaccinations and testing, as well as changing consumer spending patterns.

Walgreens reported a fourth-quarter operating loss of $450 million, an improvement from the $822 million operating losses in the same period the previous year. The net loss for the fourth quarter was $180 million, compared to a net loss of $415 million in the corresponding quarter of the previous year. These workforce adjustments and cost-reduction measures are part of Walgreens’ broader strategy to navigate challenges and position itself for financial stability.