Starbucks’ chief operating officer Rosalind Brewer will replace Stefano Pessina as chief executive of Walgreens Boots Alliance, the company has announced.

Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) announced yesterday (27 January) that Ms Brewer – who is also group president at Starbucks – would join Boots’ parent company on 15 March.

It comes after Mr Pessina confirmed in July last year that he would be stepping down from the role but would remain at the company as executive chairman of the board of WBA.

Pessina has served as CEO of the company for six years following the merger between Walgreens and Alliance Boots in December 2014.

WBA said his successor will bring ‘a proven track record of leadership and operational expertise at multi-national corporations’ to the role.

Prior to joining Starbucks, Ms Brewer worked as president and CEO of Sam’s Club, the members-only warehouse channel of Walmart Inc.

She also made history by becoming the first woman and first African American to lead a Walmart division – and is currently ranked number 27 on Fortune’s 50 Most Powerful Women in Business.

Ms Brewer said: ‘The healthcare industry is constantly evolving and I am excited to work alongside the entire WBA team as we deliver further innovation and positively impact the lives of millions of people around the world every day.

‘This is especially true today as the company plays a crucial role in combatting the Covid-19 pandemic.’

She added: ‘I step into this role with great optimism for the future of WBA, a shared responsibility to serve our customers, patients and communities, and a commitment to drive long-term sustainable value for shareholders.’