Stefano Pessina, 2010
|Born||4 June 1941
|Alma mater||Polytechnic University of Milan|
|Net worth||US$13.3 billion (June 2015)|
|Title||Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Walgreens Boots Alliance|
|Term||2015 – present|
|Board member of||He serves on the Board of Directors at Walgreens Boots Alliance|
Stefano Pessina (born 1941) is an Italian-born Monegasque billionaire businessman and the single largest shareholder in Walgreens Boots Alliance. Stefano Pessina is Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Walgreens Boots Alliance.
In 1977, he took over his family's pharmaceutical wholesaler in Naples and turned it into Alliance Santé, a Franco-Italian pharmaceutical wholesale group. In 1997, it merged with Alliance UniChem, and he joined its Board of Directors. From 2001 to 2004, he served as its Chief Executive. He served as Executive Deputy Chairman, and later as Executive Chairman.
Stefano served as Executive Chairman of Alliance Boots from 2007 – 2014 and sat on the Board of Directors of Walgreens until Aug 2014. He now serves on the Board of Directors at Walgreens Boots Alliance. He also serves on the Board of Directors of the Consumer Goods Forum.
He is separated from his wife Barbara, and they have two children. He has been the partner of Ornella Barra for over 30 years. As of February 2015, he is worth US$11.4 billion, owning around 15% of Walgreens Boots Alliance.
UK Labour Party "catastrophe"
In a 31 January 2015 interview for The Sunday Telegraph, Pessina commented on the prospect of Britain's Labour Party winning the UK general election in May 2015, "If they acted as they speak, it would be a catastrophe ... The problem is would they act that way or not? One thing is to threaten and to shout but it is completely different to be in charge and to manage the country day-to-day." He described Labour’s business policies as "not helpful for business, not helpful for the country and in the end it probably won’t be helpful for them". The Sunday Telegraph noted that Pessina "declined to elaborate on which specific policies he disliked".
On Sunday 1 February, Labour's shadow Business Secretary Chuka Umunna, responded in The Independent, "The British people and British businesses will draw their own conclusions when those who don’t live here, don’t pay tax in this country and lead firms that reportedly avoid making a fair contribution in what they pay purport to know what is in Britain’s best interest." On 2 February, in a live Q&A session with Sky News, the Labour Party leader Ed Miliband said, "The chairman of Boots lives in Monaco and doesn't pay British taxes ... I don't think people should take kindly to being told how to vote by someone who avoids paying his taxes."
On 2 February, Walgreens Boots Alliance stated, "The comments made by Stefano Pessina were a small part of a much larger conversation and have been taken out of context ... Stefano Pessina was expressing his personal views only and is not campaigning against Ed Miliband or the Labour Party." On 6 February, Allister Heath, deputy editor of The Telegraph, described the "attacks" by Labour and Liberal Democrat politicians on Pessina, "one of the world’s greatest entrepreneurs", as being "as nonsensical as they were indefensible".
- "Stefano Pessina". Forbes.com. Forbes.com LLC. Retrieved 17 February 2015.
- Hooper, John. "The secretive world of the Italian tycoon who is stalking Boots". The Guardian. Guardian News and Media Limited. Retrieved 2 January 2014.
- Stefano Pessina Biography
- Alliance Boots biography
- Andrea Felsted, Dealmaking flair of Alliance Boots head. The Financial Times, 22 June 2012
- Sideri Massimo, Pessina, signore delle farmacie che tenta la scalata in Europa, Corriere della Sera, 1/2/2014
- Consumer Goods Forum website, Board of Directors
- "Work is the drug that keeps Boots billionaire on song". The Sunday Times. November 2012.
- Ruddick, Graham (31 January 2015). "Labour government will be catastrophic for Britain, warns Boots boss". The Sunday Telegraph. Retrieved 16 February 2015.
- Bawden, Tom (1 February 2015). "Boots boss Stefano Pessina (who lives in Monaco) branded a 'disgrace' for attack on Ed Miliband". The Independent. Retrieved 16 February 2015.
- "SUBC: Miliband Attacks Boots Boss Over Tax". Sky News. 1 February 2015. Retrieved 16 February 2015.
- Grice, Andrew (2 February 2015). "Ed Miliband: 'Boots boss Stefano Pessina should pay his taxes'". The Independent. Retrieved 16 February 2015.
- Heath, Allister (6 February 2015). "These attacks against Stefano Pessina are unfair and must end". The Telegraph. Retrieved 16 February 2015.