Athenahealth gets $7B bid from Elliott Management
- Athenahealth has received an unsolicited acquisition proposal from Elliott Management for $160 a share, the company confirmed. CNBC, which first reported the deal, estimated it could be worth $7 billion including debt.
- The news sent athenahealth's stock surging by nearly 25% in early morning trading Monday.
- Paul Singer, who runs the hedge fund, bought a 9.2% economic interest in the health IT company about a year ago. Elliott Management said then it would propose changes to the company’s operations, “as well as a potential sale."
The bid isn't exactly a surprise, as Singer is known to be an activist investor. It comes as athenahealth continues to see revenue growth but still faces some struggles, such as reduced bookings.
The company has undergone a bit of a management shakeup since Singer’s investment. In August, it established a new role of president (a title CEO Jonathan Bush had previously held), and it recently appointed former GE executive Jeff Immelt as its board chairman.
Last month, athenahealth reported a 12% increase in total revenue for the first quarter of 2018, but noted bookings had declined to $52.2 million, down from $77.3 million for the same quarter last year. The Watertown, Massachusetts-based digital health company also reaffirmed its guidance for the year of $1,310-$1,380 million in total revenue.
Bush, who helped found the company in 1997, recently told Healthcare Dive he wanted to shift more focus toward platforms and build a “company upon which other companies can be built.”
Follow Shannon Muchmore on Twitter