According to CNBC, the word on Wall Street is that Accolade, a 12-year-old start-up that employers pay to help their employees navigate increasingly expensive health benefits, is seeking help from Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley to raise more money.
After operating for 12 years, Accolade serves 1.5 million employees who work for mid-sized businesses as well as giants like Lowes and Comcast. Accolade also partners with a variety of healthcare providers that have a common theme: reducing costs while improving outcomes. For example, Livongo (NASDAQ:LVGO) operates a smartphone-based platform that helps patients with diabetes and other chronic conditions manage their diseases with round-the-clock monitoring by professionals.
What to look for
Since starting up in 2007, Accolade has raised around $240 million through private investments that value the company at roughly $620 million. Of course, that estimate could change a great deal once the company discloses the details about its cash flow that are required before the SEC allows everyday investors to purchase its stock.
It's going to be interesting to see if Accolade can remain relevant in the face of competition from larger, integrated competitors. For example, UnitedHealth Group's (NYSE:UNH) Optum segment provides services for health plan sponsors that are arguably similar to Accolade's. As the nation's largest healthcare provider, UnitedHealth Group will be awfully difficult to compete with.