- Insurer Aetna will purchase health benefit management and technology firm Bswift for $400 million. The move further augments Aetna's position as a benefits administrator.
- "With more employers giving employees their choice of benefits via private exchanges, Bswift's technology platform will provide Aetna with the capability to deliver a new private-exchange offering for employers of all sizes where the focus is on helping people easily choose a plan that's right for them and their families," Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini said in a release.
- The deal is expected to close by year-end.
As employers increasingly move to private exchanges, in which employees are given a fixed sum to purchase healthcare, insurers are motivated to operate these exchanges (which usually offer their own plans). Aetna is already on that path: It recently launched a private exchange with Sam's Club, a subsidiary of Wal-Mart, that offers plans to small-business owners who are members of the bulk discount retailer. This acquisition will enable the insurer to expand this business model using Bswift's existent infrastructure.