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US: Aetna deciding whether to appeal judge’s decision to block Humana merger

 |  January 31, 2017

Aetna executives are still not ready to say whether they will give up on their proposed $37 billion acquisition of Louisville-based Humana in the face of a federal judge’s order blocking the deal on antitrust grounds.

Aetna continues to evaluate whether it will appeal the Jan. 23 order, Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini told stock analysts on a conference call Tuesday.

The company will have to decide whether to abandon the deal or work out an extension with Humana by Feb. 15, the current deadline for the merger, Bertolini said.

“We’re going to take all of that time to make sure we have pursued all potential opportunities to either appeal or not,” Bertolini said. “…We are in no rush given that we are literally two weeks away from having to make that decision.”

If the deal is terminated, Aetna would owe Humana a $1 billion break-up fee.

The companies had planned to sell some of their business to Molina Healthcare for $117 million, but the proposal failed to allay the Justice Department and judge’s concerns about competition following the merger.

Full Content: WDRB

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