Health IT, Patient Engagement

Wolters Kluwer paying $170M for patient engagement firm Emmi Solutions

The all-cash deal will give Wolters Kluwer a more complete suite of health information products and allow Emmi to gain a foothold in international markets.

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Online patient engagement content developer Emmi Solutions is being sold to Dutch publishing company Wolters Kluwer for an eye-popping $170 million. The all-cash deal will give Wolters Kluwer a more complete suite of health information products.

It also will allow Emmi to gain a foothold in international markets. Chicago-based Emmi Solutions currently gets 95 percent of its revenues from the U.S., according to data released by Wolters Kluwer.

The company Wolters Kluwer is buying provides interactive multimedia and text programs to help healthcare providers better engage patients in their own care.

Emmi began life in 2002 as Rightfield Solutions. At the time, it offered little more than a way for physicians to document that they explained conditions and treatments to patients in order to head off malpractice claims. The company changed names in 2006 and evolved into something more substantive.

In healthcare, Wolters Kluwer owns clinical decision support content supplier UpToDate and drug databases Lexicomp and Medi-Span.

“We are pleased to add this state-of-the-art patient engagement product to our range of clinical solutions,” Wolters Kluwer Health CEO Diana Nole said in a company statement.

“Combining Emmi’s products with our UpToDate and drug information offerings, we can now uniquely provide healthcare systems and their patients a consistent, high quality, evidence based solution that spans the entire continuum of care,” Nole added.

Wolters Kluwer didn’t indicate when the sale might close, but the Netherlands-based publishing firm said it expects to recoup its $170 million investment in 3-5 years. Emmi is on track to generate about $29 million in revenues in 2016, according to the acquiring company, so the ROI estimate assumes rapid growth in the near future.

A U.S.-based Wolters Kluwer spokeswoman didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Photo: Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images