Walgreens enters clinical trials business through new unit

Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc (WBA.O) on Thursday launched a clinical trials business that aims to use patient data from its pharmacies to help drive up recruitment in studies conducted by drugmakers.

Best known for its chain of drugstores, Walgreens has been looking to expand beyond its core business and spent $5.5 billion last year to take majority stakes in two health care providers, VillageMD and CareCentrix.

With the clinical trials business, the company plans to use its vast trove of data and new services to help cut costs for drugmakers and capture a share of the roughly $83 billion market.

“This is yet another way we are building our next growth engine of consumer-centric healthcare solutions,” said Ramita Tandon, Walgreen’s chief clinical trials officer.