STOUGHTON, Mass. & NEW YORK & DEERFIELD, Ill.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Shields Health Solutions, Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe (“WCAS”) and Walgreen Co. (“Walgreens”) today announced the parties have entered into a definitive agreement through which WCAS and Walgreens will make equity investments in Shields. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
Shields, the nation’s leader in patient-centric, integrated, hospital-owned specialty pharmacy care is taking on the investments as Shields continues to accelerate its national expansion. Shields currently partners with a network of more than 30 leading health systems nationwide to create on site, health system-owned specialty pharmacy programs, providing tightly integrated care management across more than 30 complex specialty disease states, including oncology, neurology, rheumatology and diabetes.
“These investments are an extraordinary validation of what we have been able to achieve with our vision for integrated specialty pharmacy care that puts health systems, patients, and care professionals at the center of our mission,” said Jack Shields, founder and chief executive officer. “Our specialty pharmacy programs are exclusively focused on delivering the best care to the patient populations that need it most. Our integrated specialty pharmacy program enables health systems to offer a more comprehensive care model for their patients—improving outcomes and lowering total cost.”
Through the agreement with WCAS, a health care and technology-focused private equity firm and Walgreens, one of the nation’s largest drugstore chains and a trusted provider of pharmacy services, Shields plans to also expand into new disease states and integrated service and technology offerings.
Mr. Shields added: “We are excited to have found our ideal partners with WCAS’ industry knowledge from decades of investing in established growth stage healthcare companies, and Walgreens’ nationwide pharmacy operating experience. Together we can accelerate our growth and expansion, bringing the Shields model to more health systems across the nation and helping to serve the complex patient populations of today and tomorrow.”
Tom Scully, WCAS general partner and former administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), said: “Jack and the Shields team have created a unique patient service model that is incredibly effective in supporting patients who are prescribed specialty pharmacy drugs and biologics. Shields hospital partners love the Shields staff and their excellent results, and we are excited to be part of the Shields team. Walgreens has also been a great partner in this process—and brings a wealth of knowledge and resources to this business. We are fired up by the opportunity to work with both our new partners to build a great specialty services company.”
“Specialty pharmacies play a critical role in ensuring a true continuum of care for patients with complex, chronic conditions,” said Alex Gourlay, Walgreens president. “New and different care offerings, such as the model Shields has developed, can be instrumental in helping to meet the changing needs of patients, payers and providers. Together with Shields and WCAS, we’re committed to working to create end-to-end solutions that can complement our existing specialty pharmacy footprint and further improve patient care.”
The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter, after customary regulatory reviews.
Centerview Partners acted as financial advisor, and Goodwin Procter LLP and Pepper Hamilton LLP acted as legal advisors for Shields Health Solutions. Ropes & Gray LLP acted as legal advisors for WCAS and Sidley Austin LLP acted as legal advisors for Walgreens.
About Shields Health Solutions
Shields Health Solutions is a specialty pharmacy integrator and care provider, partnering with hospital leaders on every aspect of specialty pharmacy creation, growth and management. Shields provides the fastest, lowest risk model for health systems to create or grow a hospital-owned specialty pharmacy program. Started in 2012, Shields partners with health systems to provide on-site pharmacy and care professionals, a purpose-built specialty pharmacy technology platform, access to nearly all limited distribution drugs (LDDs) and most (health insurance) payors in the nation. Shields provides ownership of all specialty pharmacy assets in a health system’s name.
Through a differentiated care model that “plugs into” centralized infrastructure and provides high-touch pharmacy liaisons on-site, Shields delivers superior value and a best-in-class experience to health systems, patients, payers, and manufacturers. This results from unparalleled medication adherence (92%), quicker time to therapy (<48 hours), improved patient satisfaction (85 NPS), decrease in re-admissions, lower medical spend, and fewer adverse events. For more information, see https://www.shieldshealthsolutions.com/.
Walgreens (walgreens.com), one of the nation’s largest drugstore chains, is included in the Retail Pharmacy USA Division of Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (NASDAQ: WBA), the first global pharmacy-led, health and wellbeing enterprise. Approximately 8 million customers interact with Walgreens in stores and online each day, using the most convenient, multichannel access to consumer goods and services and trusted, cost-effective pharmacy, health and wellness services and advice. As of Aug. 31, 2018, Walgreens operates 9,560 drugstores with a presence in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, along with its omni-channel business, Walgreens.com. Approximately 400 Walgreens stores offer Healthcare Clinic or other provider retail clinic services.
About Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe
WCAS is a leading U.S. private equity firm focused on two target industries: technology and healthcare. Since its founding in 1979, the Firm’s strategy has been to partner with outstanding management teams and build value for its investors through a combination of operational improvements, internal growth initiatives and strategic acquisitions. WCAS has deep experience in acquiring Founder-led businesses and corporate carve-outs. The Firm has raised and managed funds totaling over $27 billion of committed capital. For more information, please visit www.wcas.com.