Team Health, a MedPartners division that has been for sale since last June, may have found a buyer.
Team Health President Lynn Massingale, M.D., on Jan. 21 said he expected to make an announcement soon after Modern Physician's late January deadline. He did not say who the buyer would be, only that "we're making a lot of progress."
Team Health, based in Knoxville, Tenn., manages 2,300 emergency physicians and radiologists. It has annual revenues of $700 million. Birmingham, Ala.-based MedPartners had hoped to receive that much for selling Team Health. It acquired Team Health in December 1995 when it bought Redlands, Calif.-based Pacific Physician Services, a publicly traded multispecialty physician practice manager.
However, a continuing slump in practice management stocks made buyers believe $700 million was too much for Team Health, even though it is profitable, says John Rex, a healthcare analyst at BankBoston Robertson Stephens in San Francisco.
Massingale last August predicted a Team Health deal might be completed by the end of September 1998.
Rex says that might have happened if MedPartners' "price expectations hadn't been so high."
MedPartners put Team Health on the block June 23, hiring Salomon Smith Barney to explore options for selling the division. Sources inside Team Health have said a buyout group is the most likely candidate to purchase the division, although Massingale has said other PPMs have considered it as well.
The Team Health sale would come as MedPartners tries to sell its unprofitable PPM division to focus on its lucrative pharmacy-benefit management unit.
MedPartners has not announced any sale of its PPM assets. It has said it will probably take most of 1999 to sell assets representing more than 10,000 physicians.