Cigna Corporation (NYSE: CI) has entered into an agreement to acquireExpress Scripts Holding Company (NASDAQ: ESRX) for a total of $54 billion. The total transaction is valued at $67 billion including Cigna’s assumption of Express Scripts’ $15 billion debt. Express Scripts’ were 17 percent during Thursday’s premarket hours.
The merger will consist of $48.75 in cash and 0.24 shares of stock of the combined company per Express Scripts share.
Cigna says the acquisition will expand consumer choice, offering a full suite of medical, behavioral, specialty pharmacy and other health services across a variety of channels. The company says its a part of a plan to make healthcare simpler for consumers while being able to deliver top of the line efforts.
“This combination accelerates Cigna’s enterprise mission of improving the health, well-being and sense of security of those we serve, and in turn, expanding the breadth of services for our customers, partners, clients, health plans and communities. Together, we will create an expanded portfolio of health services, delivering greater consumer choice, closer alignment between the customer and health care provider, and more personalized value. This combination will create significant benefits to society and differentiated shareholder value.” said David Cordani, President and CEO of Cigna.
Upon closing, the combined company will be called Cigna and led by Cordani. Tim Wentworth will assume the role of President for Express Scripts. Cigna and Express Scripts will still maintain their current headquarters.
Cigna will also have a debt of approximately $41.1 billion after the merger. The transaction is expected to close by December 31, 2018.
“Adding our company's leadership in pharmacy and medical benefit management, technology-powered clinical solutions, and specialized patient care model to Cigna’s track record of delivering value through innovation, we are positioned to transform healthcare.” said Wentworth.