It is so far, so great as Aetna Inc. works to fold Humana Inc. into its business.
That is in accordance to Aetna president Karen Lynch, who discussed the companies’ integration attempts at the Goldman Sachs 37th Annual Global Healthcare Conference this week in the state of California.
“We are very glad with where we are, relative to our planning attempts,” she stated. “It is been a very collaborative attempt with Humana.”
Between both insurance companies, more than 200 people are working on integration planning. One isRick Jelinek, who has been hired to make sure that effort goes smoothly.
Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini initially has said his company began the exploratory procedure and started working to align cultures with Humana even before striking an acquisition deal previous year.
Lynch reiterated that during the conference, claiming the part that is “most significant and critical in any integration is the culture and the persons.”
She stated that there has been a big focus on talent retention and making certain that important leaders stay in place after all the deal is done.
Bertolini has claimed before that “stay bonuses” are in place for primary people and that he and Humana CEOBruce Broussard are “in constant discussions about this and making sure that we are keeping the people we require to keep.”
The deal also will require approval from the U.S. Department of Justice, which has been seeking into this deal and another one between Anthem Inc. and Cigna Corp. for any potential antitrust concerns. If both deals close, there would be just 3 major U.S. insurers instead of today’s 5.
Lynch stated that the deal is yet on track to close later this year. And with both of these mega insurance mergers happening in tandem, timing is observed as an important factor.
“It is significant for us to give them (the DOJ) the information that they are requesting,” she claimed. “I really do need to be respectful of the Department of Justice’s role.”
Deployed on her experience, she said, the critical factor in the DOJ’s decision will be how well the industries have planned ahead — and, as she said; they have done a lot of that.
The deal so far has gathered 15 of the 20 state approvals it requires to move forward (though 1 state recently gave certain push-back).
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