UnitedHealth to acquire struggling specialty pharmacy

UnitedHealth Group plans to buy Diplomat Pharmacy, about a month after the specialty pharmacy said it had "significant doubts" about staying in business.

Under the deal, UnitedHealth's pharmacy service unit, OptumRx, will pay about $4 per share in cash for the struggling specialty pharmacy headquartered in Flint, Mich. This values the deal at about $300 million. Optum will assume the pharmacy's outstanding debt.

"This combination will expand the innovative specialty pharmacy and infusion solutions OptumRx can offer to the consumers and clients we serve, helping ensure people get the right medications and services at the right time, in the right setting," said John Prince, CEO of OptumRx. 

Earlier this year, Diplomat reported a much larger than expected net loss of $177 million in the third quarter of 2019. When it released its financial report, the company said it likely couldn't stay in business without a sale.

Diplomat offers specialty medications and provides specialized infusion therapies in all 50 states.

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