A simple and mild method for the coupling of aryl iodides and aliphatic alcohols that does not require the use of alkoxide bases is described. The reactions can be performed in neat alcohol. For more precious alcohols, the etherification was carried out in toluene as solvent using 2 equiv of alcohol. Additionally, the cross-coupling of an optically active benzylic alcohol with an unactivated aryl halide was demonstrated to proceed with complete retention of configuration.
“Copper-Catalyzed Coupling of Aryl Iodides with Aliphatic Alcohols”, Org. Lett., 2002, 4(6), 973-976.