Stefano Pessina, named permanent chief executive officer of Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. on Thursday, wasted no time in signaling that he wants the largest U.S. drugstore chain to grow through acquisitions.

“I believe that the American market will go through a substantial wave of consolidation, horizontally and vertically,” Pessina said on a conference call to discuss the company’s latest quarterly earnings. While he wouldn’t identify potential targets, he said Walgreens wants “to be part of this at the right time with the right partner.”

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