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Last Updated: Wednesday, 2 May 2007, 06:59 GMT 07:59 UK
Profits rise post-merger at Boots
Man putting up Alliance Boots sign
Boots hopes to save 100m from the merger over the next four years
Alliance Boots has said it is good shape after unveiling a rise in profits in its first set of annual results.

The firm - formed by last year's 7bn merger of Boots and Alliance UniChem - said group underlying profits rose 7.4% to 641m in the year to 31 March.

Boots said it had made good progress in saving more than 20m from the merger, and hoped to save 100m.

The results come as Boots has agreed to an 11bn takeover led by private equity firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts.

The group's deputy chairman Stefano Pessina - who holds a 15% stake in the group - is also involved in the offer.

"We have delivered a strong financial performance while executing one of the biggest mergers undertaken in the UK," said chief executive Richard Baker.

Alliance Boots is best known in the UK for its 2,600 Boots the Chemist shops, and it also has 400 overseas outlets in countries including Thailand and Italy.

As well as the High Street retail arm, the company is a wholesale supplier to more than 125,000 pharmacies, health centres and hospitals.

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