Forbes: Is it time for a HCSC-Anthem deal? Recent exec exits raise questions

Morgan Haefner - Print  | 

Now may be the time for Health Care Service Corp. to consider a merger with some Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans, including Anthem, according to an editorial by Bruce Japsen published in Forbes.

In late July, two of HCSC's top leaders — CEO Paula Steiner and CFO Eric Feldstein — left the health insurer. A company spokesperson confirmed to Becker's that HCSC would pursue a more aggressive approach as it competes in a dynamic marketplace. Sources close to HCSC also told Forbes the board was unhappy with Ms. Steiner's long-term aspirations and strategies, despite the insurer's billion-dollar growth under her leadership.

The sources told Forbes some leaders at HCSC are open to looking into large mergers. Competitors like Aetna and Cigna recently completed big mergers with CVS Health and Express Scripts, respectively, and UnitedHealth Group is expanding its physician footprint.

Still, Mr. Japsen writes "the regulatory and political hurdles could be too steep to pull off given the different ownership structures of [HCSC] and Anthem, but these aren't ordinary times when it comes to deals within the health insurance industry."

Read the full article here.

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