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Photo: UnitedHealth Group has announced the acquisition of LHC Group


Contributing Writer

UnitedHealth Corp Inc. has agreed to buy LHC Group Inc., for about $5.4 billion in cash, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The Tuesday announcement of the acquisition agreement indicated that the LHC Group whose business originated in St. Landry Parish will become part of Optum Health Services, which already owns a growing network of medical offices, urgent care clinics and surgery centers, a published story in the Star Tribune said.

LHC Group chairman and CEO Keith Myers, a Palmetto-area native, founded the Lafayette-based LHC Group in 1994, as a single home health agency. Since then the company has grown exponentially to provide health care services in 37 states and the District of Columbia, with $243.4 million in assets with annual revenues of $383.3 million, a statement on the LHC website said.

The Star Tribune story published Tuesday, said the deal includes the acquisition of LHC Group common stock at $170 per share. The buyout deal is expected to close in the second half of 2022, according to the Star Tribune.

Final approval of the deal according to The Star Tribune is subject to LHC Group stockholders approval.

Keith and Ginger Myers will also personally invest $10 million in UnitedHealth Corp stock following the close of the combination of the companies, the Star Tribune reported.

UnitedHealth Corp is based in Minnesota.

A story that appeared in Tuesday’s Home Health Care News indicated that in 2021, LHC Group reported $2.2 billion in revenue in 2021, which was a 7 percent increase from the $2.06 billion reported by the company the previous year.

The deal between LHC Group and UnitedHealth is believed to be one of the largest of its kind over the last seven years in home-based care, the Home Health Care News said in the published story.

An Associated Press story that appeared on Tuesday indicates that LHC stock jumped 7 percent in pre-market trading.