Agfa studies sale of EMR, integrated care offerings

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Agfa Gevaert is investigating the sale of part of Agfa HealthCare, specifically its business tied to its EMR and integrated care offerings.

The company announced that its board of directors would begin study of the sale, after announcing only in March that it would further extend the independence of Agfa Healthcare.

Now, it’s looking at opportunities to sell its hospital IT and integrated care solutions, which it calls its Healthcare Information and Integrated Care Solutions business, which generally comprises its electronic health record and population health management/integrated care products.

Most of its imaging business won’t be sold, although some of it may be packaged with a potential sale in cases where the customer relationship is tightly integrated with the HCIS business.

Agfa primarily sells its hospital systems tightly integrated with imaging in Austria, Brazil, France, Germany and Switzerland; it sells imaging products and other diverse reproduction technologies worldwide.

Agfa’s healthcare IT business represents 23 percent of approximately 500 million Euros in revenues for the first quarter of the year; the radiology business represents 21 percent of its revenue, says Christian Reinaudo, CEO and executive director of Agfa-Gevaert.

The company gave no timeline on when it would expect to sell its healthcare IT business, nor would it say how proceeds of the sale would be used.

At HIMSS19, Agfa HealthCare demonstrated its “Care You Can See” initiative, with its health IT ecosystem that includes its EHR, enterprise imaging platform with embedded artificial intelligence and integrated care strategy, with a goal of helping customers migrate to use the platform for precision health. Its imaging products include a vendor-neutral archive, viewer, PACS and image exchange.

“Agfa’s HCIS business, driven by its ORBIS EMR solution, would be an attractive acquisition, given its recent performance in terms of revenue growth,” predicts Alex Green, a consultant for Signify Research. “The business has performed better than much of the rest of Agfa HealthCare over the last 12 months, with high single-digit growth in 2018 and 2017.”

That said, its HCIS business is centered in only a few countries, Green notes. “ORBIS is used in more than 1,300 healthcare facilities … with the lion’s share of customers in DACH (Germany, Austria and Switzerland) and France.”

Green believes that potential suitors include Cerner, CompuGroup Medical or Philips. “InterSystems, DXC Technology, Allscripts, MEDITECH and Tieto are all examples of EMR vendors that are in strong positions in terms of market share elsewhere in Europe, but that have limited business in DACH, France or Belgium and may view this as an opportunity to address this,” Green adds.

“The sale of Agfa’s HCIS business will largely strip away the non-imaging part of Agfa HealthCare’s business, leaving it as a pure play imaging solution vendor with products that span film, X-ray hardware, imaging IT software and artificial intelligence for imaging—a strategy that suggests it will be focused purely on addressing the imaging requirements of its customers,” Green adds.

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