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Passport Health Communications sold for $850M

Andrew Bouldin

Experian PLC, a Dublin-based data and analytical tools provider, has agreed to buy Franklin-based Passport Health Communications for $850 million, according to a news release.

"Since entering the U.S. health care payments market five years ago, we have steadily expanded our position through both organic investment and acquisition, and our business is growing strongly," Don Robert, chief executive officer of Experian, said in the release. "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."

Founded in 1996, Passport Health provides software-as-a-service solutions to hospitals and health care providers to improve business operations and help them secure payment. The company serves more than 2,500 hospitals and 9,000 physicians, clinics, and ancillary services, and handles more than 400 million transactions annually.

Experian entered the U.S. health care payments market in 2008, with the acquisition of SearchAmerica, which focused on helping hospitals to manage their billings and cash flows. The company merged that business with Medical Present Value, a 2011 acquisition, to create Experian Healthcare, which is expected to generate revenue of $75 million in the fiscal year ending March 2014.

According to reports, Franklin is expected to become the U.S. headquarters for Experian.

According to the release, Passport Health has average renewal rates of 95 percent and average contract duration of 3 to 5 years, making it an attractive acquisition for Experian. In the year ending Dec. 31, 2013, Passport Health is expected to generate $121 million in revenue. In the year ending Dec. 31, 2014, Experian expects Passport Health revenue to reach approximately $145 million, of which 84 percent is already booked and contracted.

"With our newly combined product range, we will offer our clients in the U.S. health care 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," Robert said.