Walgreens sinks after sales miss

Walgreens pharmacy pharmacist

Reuters/Elijah Nouvelage

A pharmacist works at an internal pharmacy run by Walgreens at a Cisco health clinic at Cisco Systems in San Jose, California, U.S., March 22, 2018

Walgreens Boots Alliance was down about 3% early Thursday after the pharmacy chain reported fiscal fourth-quarter sales that missed Wall Street estimates.

Sales jumped 10.9% from a year ago to $33.4 billion, but that was shy of the $33.77 billion that analysts surveyed by Bloomberg were expecting. Walgreens $1.48 a share, or $1.4 billion, beating the Wall Street consensus of $1.45. Same-store sales increased 0.3%.Advertisement

Walgreens' U.S. retail pharmacy revenues increased by 14.4% to $25.5 billion compared to the year-ago quarter. This was primarily due to higher prescription volume from the acquisition of Rite Aid stores, added the company release.

"The integration of the acquired Rite Aid stores is on track, and our pharmacy market share in the U.S. increased year-over-year on an annual basis," Stefano Pessina, Walgreen's executive vice chairman and chief executive said in a press release.

The company issued fiscal-year 2019 adjusted earnings-per-share guidance of between $6.40 and $6.70 a share.

Earlier this year, the company teamed up with LabCorp, Kroger, and Alibaba to expand into newer markets and tap additional opportunities for growth. For instance, the partnership with Kroger will let consumers order online and pick up groceries in select Walgreens' store. And the partnership with Alibaba will allow Walgreens to sell its products in China on the e-commerce site.

Walgreens shares were down 8.2% so far this year.
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