• GuideWell, the parent company of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida, is set to acquire Triple S Management, the Blue Cross Blue Shield Plan and largest insurance carrier in Puerto Rico.
  • The $900 million cash deal will add another company to GuideWell’s portfolio of health-focused subsidiaries. After the deal is complete, Triple S will become a wholly owned subsidiary of GuideWell and will continue to operate under the same brand name and management team, the two companies said Tuesday.
  • The deal is expected to close in the first half of next year and is subject to regulatory approvals.

Dive Insight:

One aim of the deal is to provide a more competitive Medicare Advantage product in Florida and Puerto Rico, executives outlined in a letter to other Blue Cross Blue Shield CEOs.

The deal will help Florida Blue accelerate growth in key service lines, Medicare Advantage in particular. The deal also will help accelerate growth among its fast-growing Puerto Rican and Hispanic populations.

Florida Blue covers more than 5 million people in Florida.

For GuideWell, the deal means picking up more than 1 million covered lives on the island and gives GuideWell a Medicare Advantage, Medicaid and commercial footprint on the island.

In a letter to employees, Guidewell said the “transaction expands GuideWell’s core insurance operations and will position us for significant growth.”

The deal was unanimously approved by both companies’ boards. Before it can close, the deal must receive regulatory approvals.

GuideWell is the latest company to make inroads into Puerto Rico.

Earlier this year, Anthem acquired the largest MA plan on the island. In February, Anthem entered into a deal with InnovaCare Health to acquire its Puerto Rico subsidiaries, including Medicaid and MA plans.

Healthcare consolidation has continued at a fast pace despite the uncertainty brought by the COVID-19 pandemic, and hospital analysts expect it to continue.

Insurers have been busy making deals, too. Propelled by the pandemic, insurers are considering homecare deals. Humana is acquiring a remaining stake in Kindred, a provider of home health. And Molina has continued its march of buying up plans to expand its core business.