Optum drops Nevada clinics from DaVita buyout amid antitrust scrutiny

By Jessie Bekker / Las Vegas Review-JournalDecember 20, 2018 – 6:20 pm

UnitedHealth Group’s Optum is dropping plans to purchase the DaVita Medical Group physician clinics in Nevada after the Federal Trade Commission investigated the deal’s compliance with antitrust regulations.

DaVita, in a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filing last week, indicated that while Optum will continue with its planned purchase of DaVita, it will carve out the Nevada clinics. That, along with 2018 business performance and projections for 2019 performance, reduce the price it will pay for DaVita by $560 million, to $4.34 billion, it said.

DaVita, which operates HealthCare Partners and WellHealth Quality Care in Nevada, said the move was tied to “underlying business performance and in an effort to expedite the process to obtain (Federal Trade Commission) approval.”

The announcement follows an FTC review launched in March of the planned deal, SEC filings show, pursuant to the Antitrust Improvements Act, which requires companies undergoing acquisitions to prove the purchase wouldn’t create a monopoly.

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