(Reuters) – U.S. grocery chain operator Albertsons Companies Inc (N:ABS) plans to buy the part of Rite Aid Corp (N:RAD) that is not being bought by Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc (O:WBA), the Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday.
The drug store operator and Albertsons together are valued at around $24 billion, including debt, WSJ said.
If the deal goes through, the agreement would create a company with revenue of $83 billion. It would also make way for Albertsons to go public following a more than a decade-long ownership by private equity firm Cerberus Capital Management LP, according to WSJ.
Rite Aid and Albertsons did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Rite Aid, which sells prescription drugs, has been struggling with eroding profits in its pharmacy business as increases in branded drug prices have slowed while reimbursement pressures for generics has intensified.
Rite Aid has regulatory approval to sell 1,932 stories to Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc for $4.38 billion. Under the deal, Rite Aid has the option of joining Walgreens’ group purchasing agreement to negotiate discounts on generic drug prices.