The UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has provided provisional clearance to managed healthcare and insurance company UnitedHealth Group’s proposed acquisition of UK-based EMIS.

This clearance comes after the CMA carried out an in-depth investigation of the proposed transaction, which is valued at approximately £1.2bn ($1.57bn).

In phase one of the investigation, which started on 20 January, CMA identified initial concerns about this potential deal.

EMIS supplies data management systems, such as electronic patient record systems used by general practitioners (GP) to the UK’s National Health Service (NHS), which is seeking digital and data-driven solution to enhance the country’s healthcare sector.

Meanwhile, Optum, a part of UnitedHealth, is also supplying software for the UK’s GPs when prescribing medicines along with data analytics and advisory services to NHS for improving overall healthcare and health service provision.

The CMA confirmed that the merging businesses “do not” provide competing services.

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData

These concerns were investigated further in detail in phase two, which began on 31 March and was overseen by an independent panel.

The panel provisionally concluded that this merger “does not” raise any competition concerns, as the merged entities would not, in practice, be able to leverage EMIS business to damage the competitiveness of rivals.

This is due to the NHS’ capability to use its oversight role for protecting the merged business from pursuing such strategies.

CMA investigation independent inquiry panel chair Kirstin Baker said: “We want to ensure the NHS continues to benefit from innovation and efficiencies brought about by technology services competing for its business.

“After carefully considering a broad range of evidence, we have provisionally found that this deal is not expected to harm competition or adversely affect patients.”

The latest findings are provisional and the CMA will issue a final report by 5 October 2023.