HEALTHEON-WebMD: Merger Will Total $5.5 Billion
More details on the proposed Healtheon-WebMD merger are emerging, as sources say the Healtheon board has approved the deal and WebMD's board is slated to make the call this morning. The Wall Street Journal reports that the stock-swap merger's value is expected to total about $5.5 billion, and that corporate backers -- including Excite Inc., Microsoft Corp., McKesson HBOC Inc. and Intel -- will invest approximately $500 million either in WebMD before the merger or in the combined company after the transaction is complete. Excite, about to be acquired by At Home Corp., is expected to invest $20 to $30 million in WebMD prior to close; WebMD, in turn, will sink $60 million into advertising on Excite in exchange for status as the portal's sole health care content provider. The merged company is also expected to be the sole health care content provider for Lycos Inc. and Microsoft's MSN, "giving WebMD the potential for huge traffic." Healtheon CEO Michael Long will chair the new company, WebMD Chair and CEO Jeffrey Arnold will take over the no. 2 spot, and Healtheon founder and chair Jim Clark will be a director (Lipin/Swisher, 5/19).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.