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CVS Health and Aetna in June 2018 announced their post-merger leadership team. Aetna President Karen Lynch will stay on as executive vice president of CVS and president of the Aetna business unit. Richard di Benedetto will continue in his current role as president of Aetna International. Shawn Guertin, Aetna’s CFO and chief enterprise risk officer, will become executive vice president and CFO of CVS. Fran Soistman, executive vice president

Gallagher in May 2018 announced several acquisitions in the United States and England to bolster its retail property/casualty brokerage operations and employee benefits consulting services. Simi Valley, California-based Thomas Costello Insurance Agency is a retail property/casualty broker, and employee benefits consultant and broker, offering commercial and personal coverages to clients primarily across Southern California. Tom Costello and his associates will continue to operate from their current location under the direction of Scott

AXA in May 2018 completed the initial public offering (IPO) of its U.S. individual life insurance unit, formerly known as The Equitable Life Assurance Society of America and based in New York, NY. Total proceeds are estimated at $4 billion. AXA had demutualized and recapitalized the failed U.S. mutual life insurance company, The Equitable, to the tune of $1 billion in July 1991. Back then, the company had $5.9

ECA Italy in June and July 2018 organizes three training sessions for HR professionals, covering tax, benefits, employment law and immigration. The destinations addressed are Asia, the U.S., and the Balkans. The Asia session (China, Singapore, Hong Kong, Vietnam) is scheduled on 6 June 2018 from 09:30 to 17:00 U.S.A. session: June 20, 2018 from 09:30 to 13:30 Balkans session (Romania, Serbia, Bosnia, and Montenegro) – 4 July 2018

U.S. surgeon general Jerome Adams in April 2018 urged employers to help in fighting the opioid epidemic. He was speaking at a conference sponsored by the National Business Group on Health (NBGH), an association of large employers. Adams estimates that 2.1 million people in the U.S. are struggling with an opioid-use condition. While these drugs can be helpful for a short time, they pose serious addiction risks. Common opioids include

Global mobility management company Topia (formerly MOVE Guides and Polaris Global Mobility) in April 2018 announced it has hired Adam Sold as Senior Vice President of Field Operations. Sold will report directly to Topia founder and CEO Brynne Kennedy. He joins Topia from FinancialForce, where he led worldwide field operations and has over 25 years of experience in the field, having held senior positions in operations management, sales, customer

MOVE Guides and Polaris Global Mobility in April 2018 announced that they have come together under a new name and identity–Topia. Over the past six years, MOVE Guide’s Global Mobility Management (GMM) software suite has grown to include all parts of global mobility in a single solution. In the end, relocation comprised only one part of their offering and the name MOVE Guides no longer made sense to many

U.S. human capital data analytics company PredictiveHR (PHR), in March 2018 announced an alliance with TrenData, a developer of A.I.-driven people analytics software. This alliance includes a technology license agreement, an infusion of operating capital and a collaborative go-to-market strategy, and comes on the heels of a number of key client wins by PHR in 2017 extending into 2018. Headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, PredictiveHR provides Human Resources and C-Level

Ascensus, a U.S. third-party administrator (TPA) of savings products, in March 2018 entered into an agreement to acquire Chard Snyder, which will serve as the anchor business for Ascensus’ newly formed Health division. Chard Snyder is a TPA that services consumer-directed health (CDH) plans including health savings accounts, health reimbursement arrangements, and flexible spending accounts. It also offers benefit continuation services like COBRA and FMLA leave administration along with

MOVE Guides, a worldwide workforce mobility management company, in March 2018 announced the hiring of Susan Repo as its Chief Financial Officer. Reporting to CEO and founder Brynne Kennedy, Repo will lead MOVE Guides’ global finance, legal, business and sales operations. With Repo’s appointment to CFO, MOVE Guides achieves gender parity across its executive team and continues its commitment to promoting diversity in leadership. Repo comes to MOVE Guides

U.S. health insurance start-up Oscar Health in March 2018 raised $165 million in a funding round led by Founders Fund to finance its expansion plans in four to five cities a year. This funding round was led by Brian Singerman and Founders Fund and includes 8VC, Verily Life Sciences, Fidelity, General Catalyst, Capital G, Khosla Ventures, Thrive Capital, and others. Oscar Health claims it has generated an underwriting profit

Tax partner Michael Bussa has been named the national leader, U.S., for the Global Reward Services (GRS) practice of audit, tax and advisory firm KPMG. Bussa has more than 30 years’ experience advising organizations on the structuring, implementation, and tax and regulatory compliance of their global reward programs to his new position. According to him, “Globalization, technological advances, regulatory changes, the future of retirement, the shifting landscape of health

The Conference Board Employment Trends Index (ETI) for the U.S. increased sharply in February 2018, after also increasing in January. The index now stands at 107.74, up from 106.50 (a downward revision) in January. The change represents a 5.6 percent gain in the ETI compared to a year ago, “suggesting that strong job growth is likely to continue in the coming months,” according to Gad Levanon, Chief Economist, North

Three months after the December 2017 announcement that CVS Health had purchased Aetna, their respective shareholders on March 13, 2018 voted to approve the proposed $69 billion merger of the companies at special meetings. As discussed in an earlier post, the acquisition sets the stage for a new type of company that will include a health insurer, a retail pharmacy, and a pharmacy benefits manager that negotiates prescription drug

The Pacific Research Institute in February 2018 released a study, Breaking Down Barriers, that examines the economic impact of duplicative licensing regulations for independent claims adjusters and underscores the need for increased licensing reciprocity among U.S. states. According to the study, the average claims adjuster holds between ten and twelve different state licenses, which can cost as much as $1,000 each. These burdensome requirements make it more difficult for

A new ESIS whitepaper published in February 2018, Why Employers Should Consider Integrated Medical Programs to Manage Workers Compensation Costs explores how companies may reduce their workers compensation medical costs by implementing a centralized approach to claims management while ensuring optimal claims outcomes. ESIS, a wholly owned subsidiary of property and casualty (P&C) insurer Chubb, provides claim and risk management services to commercial clients. According to ESIS, with medical

Men and women of all age groups have been visiting YouCanPlanForThis.org, a free website launched in September 2017 by independent nonprofit FAIR Health that enables New York State residents to plan their healthcare costs. The site offers cost lookup tools, powered by FAIR Health’s billions of private healthcare claims records, that allow consumers to estimate in-network and out of-network costs for thousands of medical procedures in their geographic areas,

75 percent of U.S. employees believe their health plan has never alerted them to a health risk, according to the HealthMine 2018 Rising Risk Survey that underscores the challenges health care plans face when educating members about potential health risks and when motivating them to take action to prevent becoming ill. Bryce Williams, President and CEO of HealthMine, pointed out that 86 percent of the US$2.7 trillion annual health

Generali Global Assistance (GGA) in February 2018 announced that it has implemented its proprietary identity and digital protection platform for Deposits.com, which is now able to offer its customers 360° identity protection services including prevention, monitoring, alerts and resolution tools. Deposits.com is a multi-platform financial directory and secure, online portal that connects financial institutions with consumers looking to open financial accounts, take out a mortgage or loan, find a

Alera Group, a U.S. employee benefits, property/casualty, risk management and wealth management firm, in February 2018 announced that they have acquired three more firms, bringing the grand total of their acquisitions since their January 2017 launch to 20. The February 1, 2018 transaction includes Aisling Partners Insurance Brokerage of Worcester, Massachusetts; Davidson Benefits Planning (DBP) of Tigard, Oregon; and HR Benefits Advisors headquartered in Rochester, New York. Aisling is

Alera Group, a U.S. employee benefits, property/casualty, risk management and wealth management firm, in February 2018 announced that they have acquired Spring Consulting Group, located in Boston, Massachusetts. This acquisition expands the national presence of Alera Group to 17 U.S. states. Spring Consulting Group is a multidisciplinary employee benefits and risk management consulting firm that is well known in the employee benefits captive market. Their expertise covers the full

JoAnne Steed in January 2018 has been named senior account executive at Lockton’s South Florida operation, and will be responsible for day to day client strategy and service on health and welfare plans, benefits administration, benefits financing, and structuring employee benefits programs. An experienced employee benefits advisor with more than 15 years of experience guiding clients as an account manager and consultant, Steed has previously worked with Mercer, United

Wolters Kluwer Legal and Regulatory U.S. in January 2018 announced the release of a new white paper: Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Will Present Retirement, Benefits, Executive Compensation and Payroll Professionals with New Challenges in 2018, which examines the impacts of the tax bill recently signed into law by President Trump. The white paper looks at aspects of the new law, which will affect a wide range of retirement,

Aetna in November 2017 sold its group life and disability insurance and absence management business to The Hartford for $1.45bn. Life and disability was the only non-health insurance related part of the business remaining after Aetna cut its property casualty insurance business in the mid-1990s. It only brought in about $2bn in premiums in 2016, while Aetna recorded $63.1bn in total revenue, and healthcare premium revenues reached $54.1bn. The

Governments in Paris, Berlin, London, Madrid, and Rome sent a joint letter to U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin in mid-December 2017 warning him of the risk of tax treaty violations arising from the tax reform under discussion in the United States. If Donald Trump is relying heavily on the tax reform submitted to Congress in autumn − to rebuild his image − he is sending shudders through

DaVita Medical Group, a U.S. independent medical group and a subsidiary of DaVita, and Optum, a health services company that is part of UnitedHealth Group, have agreed to merge as of 5 December 2017 for approximately $4.9 billion in cash. The transaction is expected to close in 2018 and is subject to regulatory approval and other customary closing conditions. DaVita, a Fortune 500 company, is the parent company of

The announcement that CVS Health has purchased Aetna, referred to in our earlier news item, was made on Sunday, 4 December 2017, laying to rest months of rumor and speculation. The acquisition sets the stage for a new type of company that will include a health insurer, a retail pharmacy, and a pharmacy benefits manager that negotiates prescription drug prices with drug-makers. The announcement comes at a time when