Northgate acquires EMIS screening business for £14.9m

Software and healthcare services provider Northgate Public Services (NPS) has strengthened its position in the screening and preventative healthcare market after acquiring the Specialist & Care segment of EMIS Group Plc for £14.9m.

The segment, which EMIS identified as non-core in the growth strategy it set out at the end of last year, comprises three eye screening and software businesses operating across the UK and Ireland: Medical Imaging UK Ltd, MIDRSS Ltd and Digital Healthcare Ltd. Combined, the businesses are the leading provider of diabetic eye screening software in England and Ireland, assessing around 50,000 patients every month in 1,200 different locations.

The deal will give NPS an additional foothold in the screening sector, where it already operates in eight countries, including the fast-growing Indian healthcare market. It will also complement existing screening services in the UK, where it operates the Newborn Hearing Screening Programme in England and Ireland and Scotland’s Diabetic Screening Programme.

The £14.9m cash consideration comprises £14m paid on completion (inclusive of £5m of intercompany debtor balances settled in cash by EMIS Group on completion) and £0.9m of contingent consideration.

EMIS said it would use the proceeds for general corporate purposes including investment in its future growth plans.

NPS CEO Stephen Callaghan said: ‘Uniting our extensive experience in healthcare screening will bring the best possible preventative technology and care to the public, initially in the UK and subsequently in other parts of the world. We are very proud of our existing screening programmes in UK, Ireland and India and are very much looking forward to extending our offering to secure the best possible patient outcomes. Preventative measures, such as screening, will have an increasing role to play in improving health in both the UK and worldwide.’