Company Roundup: Premier Healthcare Exchange, Veritext, Ocean Power Technologies, Heartland Payment Systems


Photo: Chris Sugden of Edison Partners Photo Credit: Via Twitter

Chris Sugden of Edison Partners | Via Twitter

Premier Healthcare Exchange: Bedminster-based Premier Healthcare Exchange (PHX) announced that the company and its subsidiary Pay-Plus Solutions (Clearwater, Fla.) would be merging with Stratose (Atlanta, Ga.) and GlobalCare (Alpharetta, Ga.) to create a next-generation company in healthcare-claims cost containment and value management. PHX will provide advanced cost-management and electronics-payment solutions to health plans, “combining people, process, technology and business intelligence” to deliver savings to customers.

Edison Partners was an investor in PHX, and the Princeton-based VC said that the exit had earned it more than a 10 times return and an internal rate of return of over 70 percent.

Edison will maintain a minority ownership position in the new company, and Chris Sugden, the managing partner of Edison Partners, who was on the PHX board, is joining the new company’s board of directors.  Sugden added, “This combination creates a formidable market leader in end-to-end healthcare value management, and we’re excited to continue to be a part of it.”

The transaction was sponsored by Parthenon Capital Partners (Boston and San Francisco), a growth-oriented private equity firm that focuses on building franchise companies in the healthcare and financial service sectors. Parthenon is providing both capital and strategic resources to support the innovation and growth initiatives of the new company. As part of the transaction, senior leaders of the predecessor companies have retained significant ownership in the combined entity. We hear that PHX will continue its operations in Bedminster.

Ocean Power Technologies: Ocean Power Technologies (OPT), headquartered  in Pennington, said that it had received approximately $1.7 million from the State of New Jersey’s Technology Business Tax Certificate Transfer Program. Under the program, administered by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA) and the state’s Division of Taxation, some New Jersey-based tech companies with fewer than 225 employees in the U.S. can sell their net operating losses and R&D tax credits to unaffiliated corporations. In this case, OPT sold its net operating losses and tax credits to PSE&G.

There is further good news for OPT,  which went through some rough times in 2014. At the end of January, the company announced that its APB350 (A1) PowerBuoy had achieved several significant milestones. Total cumulative deployment time exceeded 125 days and the energy generated surpassed 1,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh), or 1 megawatt-hour (MWh).  In addition, the company achieved a new maximum energy-generation record of 32 kWh of energy for a 24-hour period. The APB350 A1, deployed off the coast of New Jersey, has communicated key performance as well as meteorological data from the buoy’s integrated weather station.

Photo: George Kirby of Ocean Power Technologies Photo Credit: Courtesy OPT

George Kirby of Ocean Power Technologies | Courtesy OPT

George H. Kirby, president and CEO of OPT, stated, “We continue to be very excited by the A1’s overall performance, specifically its power generation in extreme ocean conditions.  The A1 results are significant as they continue to confirm design robustness and demonstrate measurable progress toward commercial readiness on three key focus areas: the [Power Take-Off]; the survivability of the PowerBuoy system during high sea states; and the linear seal, which prevents water from entering the buoy.”

Veritext: Pamplona Capital Management (New York), a global private equity investment firm, said that it had acquired VText Holdings, also known as “Veritext.” Based in Livingston, Veritext was previously owned by the private equity firm Investcorp, which acquired the business in 2010. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Veritext provides deposition and litigation support solutions, many of which involve technology. For example, it offers technologies for streamlining the deposition process, enhancing delivery flexibility, and handling complex cases. A mobile offering called “Veritext Virtual” allows users to see, hear, read, annotate and participate in live depositions remotely via webcam-enabled laptops, tablets or computers with real-time streaming text.

Heartland Payment Systems: Heartland Payment Systems (Princeton), which itself is in the process of being acquired by Global Payments (Atlanta, Ga.), has bought privately held Beanstalk Data (Charlotte, N.C.), a provider of customer engagement platforms for restaurants in the U.S. This acquisition will allow Heartland to help restaurants seamlessly integrate their customer relationship management (CRM) systems and marketing and engagement programs by using Heartland’s point of sale (POS) and e-commerce solutions, the company said in a statement.

Heartland said that, with the acquisition of Beanstalk Data, it is advancing its strategy of growing its commerce segment. Previously, Heartland had acquired Digital Dining (Springfield, Va.) in October 2015, pcAmerica (Pearl River, N.Y.) and Dinerware (Seattle, Wash.) in February 2015 and XPIENT Solutions (Charlotte, N.C.) and LiquorPOS in 2014. The company will continue seeking attractive acquisitions to support its strategy, according to a statement.

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