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Cross Country Healthcare absorbs competing staffing firm


By Bob Herman
Posted: June 3, 2014 - 1:45 pm ET
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Consolidation has surfaced in the healthcare staffing sector with Cross Country Healthcare agreeing to acquire an in-town competitor.

The publicly traded Cross Country will purchase the assets and assume liabilities of Medical Staffing Network for $48.3 million. Cross Country, based in Boca Raton, Fla., provides nursing, allied staffing and locum tenens physician staffing at 3,000 hospitals and healthcare facilities. MSN, also based in Boca Raton, similarly places nurses, allied staff, pharmacy, anesthesia and other temporary and permanent clinical employees.

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Cross Country officials expect the deal to negatively impact earnings per share this year by $0.10-$0.12, due to various charges, but next year it could boost earnings per share by $0.12-$0.15. The acquisition is likely to close by the end of this month.

Cross Country struggled in 2013, posting a net loss of $52 million on $438.3 million of revenue. In the first quarter of this year, Cross Country lost $782,000 on $118.1 million of revenue. Comparatively, MSN had revenues of $229 million and $78 million in fiscal 2013 and the first quarter of this year, respectively.

Investors responded positively to the deal in early morning trading, as Cross Country's shares were up 6.5% to $6.04 as of 11:45 a.m. EDT.

Follow Bob Herman on Twitter: @MHbherman


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