Jun 2013

Experian Acquisition of Passport Health Communications

Experian, the global information services company, is pleased to announce that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Passport Health Communications, Inc. ("Passport Health"), a leading provider of data, analytics and software in the US healthcare payments market, subject to Hart-Scott-Rodino regulatory approval in the US and other customary closing conditions. The purchase price is US$850m, payable in full at closing, which will be funded from Experian's existing committed bank facilities.

Don Robert, Chief Executive Officer of Experian, commented:

"Since entering the US healthcare payments market five years ago, we have steadily expanded our position through both organic investment and acquisition, and our business is growing strongly. We are now taking the next step and the acquisition of Passport Health will make us a clear leader in this high growth and attractive market. With our newly combined product range, we will offer our clients in the US healthcare industry a competitive one-stop-shop to manage risk and to satisfy their payments requirements. We are excited about the growth opportunities created by this combination and we greatly look forward to welcoming our new Passport Health colleagues to Experian once the transaction completes."

Business description

Founded in the United States in 1996, Passport Health provides services to healthcare providers across all 50 US states, helping them manage the administrative tasks associated with obtaining payment for healthcare services.

Passport Health is a data and software provider, with sales to over 2,500 hospitals in the US and more than 9,000 other healthcare providers. Its products are used by healthcare providers to manage payments between patients, commercial payers (such as insurance companies) and government programmes. Its services include verifying a patient's identity and ability to pay, estimating a patient's bill and establishing a patient's eligibility for financial and charitable aid. Passport Health provides its services through a modular suite which allows its customers to access all its products on one common user interface, integrated into the healthcare provider's own systems. It also has access to considerable sources of healthcare payments and claims data, spanning a ten year period.

The US healthcare industry

Healthcare industry in the US is a US$3 trillion industry that consumes approximately 18% of US GDP. It includes healthcare providers that range in size from small physician clinics and individual hospitals, to large healthcare groups.

The administrative tasks associated with obtaining payment for healthcare services have become increasingly costly for healthcare providers, while healthcare payment regulations have increased in complexity. Patients are becoming responsible for a larger portion of their healthcare bill and reimbursement rates covered by insurance policies often fluctuate. This is leading healthcare providers to make improvements in the way they gather information from patients, how they determine patient eligibility for insurance and charitable aid, and how the final bill gets presented.

To reduce costs, hospitals are increasingly relying on data and analytics in order to automate the billings cycle and to make it more efficient. This is driving a period of accelerated growth in the US healthcare payments market with spending by hospitals of US$1.9bn in 2012, forecast to reach over US$3bn by 2017(1).