Ebix gets into health care market with A.D.A.M. buy

Ebix said it now has an end-to-end SAAS portal that can integrate everything from enrollment to claims, back-end processing and (now) e-learning solutions.

Ebix, a fast-growing provider of e-commerce services to the insurance industry, made its move into health care today by buying A.D.A.M.,  which produces content tools for hospitals and health plans.

Both companies are based in Atlanta, with Ebix located in the Sandy Springs area and A.D.A.M. based in Midtown. The price is $66 million in stock, about .3 share of Ebix for each share of A.D.A.M.

In a press release announcing the deal, Ebix said it now has an end-to-end SAAS portal that can integrate everything from enrollment to claims, back-end processing and (now) e-learning solutions.

A.D.A.M. offers the kind of consumer education many health insurers now want to add to their offerings, as they enter an era where capitation and fee-per-patient are the cool buzzwords.

Ebix has been a hot stock lately, recording year-over-year growth of 51% despite a nasty economic environment, making it #3 (with a bullet) on Fortune's list of the 100 fastest-growing public companies.

CEO Robin Raina, an Indian-American, is quickly becoming a management legend in Atlanta, with his own analyst fan club.

A profile of Raina on his Foundation's Web site (from which the picture above is taken) notes he is a Kashmiri Hindu who was headed to medical school before his life was turned upside down by the Indian military in 1984, leading him to get an MBA instead. He turned out to be a natural.

Adding education to a transaction exchange may sound goofy, but it makes perfect sense in today's insurance IT environment.

Companies that trust Ebix for enrolling customers and handling claims may now feel an obligation to do health education, and A.D.A.M. fits the bill. The deal also gives A.D.A.M. a go-to-market strategy it previously lacked.

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