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Cigna buying Express Scripts for $67B

Cigna buying Express Scripts for $67B

Cigna buying Express Scripts for $67B

More interesting news about Express Scripts Holding Company (NASDAQ:ESRX) were released by: Courant.com and their article: "Cigna To Buy Express Scripts in $67 Billion Deal" published on March 08, 2018 as well as Reuters.com's news article titled: "BRIEF-Cigna To Acquire Express Scripts For $67 Billion" with publication date: March 08, 2018.

"It is possible that the threat of an Amazon entry into the healthcare and possibly the drug supply chain landscape ... has spurred Cigna and Express Scripts to tie the knot", said Leerink Partners analyst Ana Gupte. In 2015, Aetna agreed to buy fellow health insurer Humana Inc.in a $37 billion deal that was later terminated following regulatory scrutiny. Express Scripts (esrx), which manages plans covering more than 100 million people, and its rivals are becoming more aggressive with tactics to control costs, increasingly denying coverage of some drugs or requiring high co-payments for expensive treatments. It comes as Express Scripts is set to lose its biggest client.

This is Cigna's first major merger initiative since a federal court in 2017 blocked a deal in which Cigna would have been acquired by Indiana-based Anthem Inc. because of antitrust concerns. The companies are to go to trial in 2019.

The combined company's board will be expanded to 13 directors, including four independent members of the Express Scripts board.

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The Affordable Care Act also is forcing health insurers and others in the industry to consolidate in response to broader federal involvement in health care and uncertainty caused by revisions in the law by Congress. Tim Wentworth, president and CEO of Express Scripts, would become president of Cigna, the companies said. At the same time, other health care companies are consolidating as they seek to offer more services to customers including hospital chains and consumers.

"Together, our two organizations will help make the healthiest choices the easiest choices, putting health and pharmacy services within reach of everyone we serve", he said. Express Scripts also distributes a full range of biopharmaceutical products and provides extensive cost-management and patient-care services.

The deal between the two healthcare giants, which is expected to close later this year, continues a pattern of consolidation in the pharmacy and insurance industries. Meanwhile, Express Scripts' stock price finished the trading day up 8.6 percent, to $79.72 a share. ANTM was blocked by regulators past year, on concerns that the combination would stifle competition in the healthcare industry since both companies had overlapping businesses. The terms represent a roughly 31% premium to Express Scripts' closing price on Wednesday, according to the statement.

Express Scripts now manages pharmacy and medical benefits for more than 100 million in the United States, said Express Scripts chief executive Tim Wentworth. Cigna expects to have a debt-to-capitalisation ratio of approximately 49 per cent following the acquisition, and aims to achieve a ratio in the 30s within 18 to 24 months after the transaction closes.

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