Optum completes its acquisition of Advisory Board

Ruhman joins NewcrestImage with more than 20 years of hospitality experience in senior management positions.
Optum's chief executive says the UnitedHealth subsidiary intends to preserve the "objectivity and credibility of Advisory Board's industry-leading research."

Optum has completed its purchase of the healthcare division of The Advisory Board Company, marrying the powerful healthcare services arm of a major payer with one of the healthcare industry’s leading consultancies.

The transaction was finalized Friday after the Advisory Board's shareholders voted to approve it. The deal, which is valued at $1.3 billion, was first announced in late August.

In a related transaction, the Advisory Board sold its education division, known as EAB, to the investment firm Vista Equity Partners for $1.55 billion. 

Free Daily Newsletter

Like this story? Subscribe to FierceHealthcare!

The healthcare sector remains in flux as policy, regulation, technology and trends shape the market. FierceHealthcare subscribers rely on our suite of newsletters as their must-read source for the latest news, analysis and data impacting their world. Sign up today to get healthcare news and updates delivered to your inbox and read on the go.

"For more than 30 years, Advisory Board's strategic insights have been an important part of the national healthcare conversation, and we are thrilled to welcome them to Optum," Larry Renfro, CEO of Optum, said in a statement.

RELATED: Optum embroiled in Anthem-Express Scripts legal spat

Indeed, the deal will give Optum access to the executives of the more than 4,000 hospital and health system clients that rely on the Advisory Board for strategic consulting. Given the fact that Optum is owned by UnitedHealth, though, one industry expert has wondered whether it will be able to maintain those client relationships given the historic payer-provider divide.

Another prominent analyst, though, said she expects UnitedHealth will continue “successfully managing” any confidentiality concerns across its managed care businesses and Optum, as FierceHealthcare reported.

For Renfro’s part, he took care to emphasize that the Advisory Board’s neutrality won’t change now that it is under Optum’s ever-growing umbrella.

"Together, we will be able to offer deeper and more comprehensive solutions to help all segments of the healthcare industry thrive in this evolving market, while preserving the objectivity and credibility of Advisory Board's industry-leading research," he said.

Suggested Articles

Hospitals are already signaling a legal challenge to a final rule from CMS on price transparency, but the agency is ready.

Aleksandr Pikus, 44, of Brooklyn, was found guilty of one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering and two counts of money laundering.

CMS issued a proposed rule and a final rule aimed at increasing price transparency from hospitals and insurers.