KKR nears agreement to acquire Envision for about $5.5 billion: source

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(Reuters) – Private equity firm KKR & Co is nearing an agreement to acquire U.S. physician services provider Envision Healthcare Corp for $46 a share, or about $5.5 billion, a person familiar with the deal told Reuters on Sunday.

A deal could be announced as soon as Monday, the source said.

A KKR spokeswoman declined to comment. Envision did not respond to a request for comment outside regular business hours.

Reuters reported last month that KKR and U.S. hospital operator HCA Healthcare Inc had joined forces to make an offer for Envision, with the move aimed at giving HCA and KKR an edge over buyout firms, which were also pursuing Envision.

Other private equity firms competing for Envision included a consortium of Carlyle Group LP and TPG Global, sources told Reuters in May.

Envision said in 2017 that it was reviewing a range of strategic alternatives after reporting disappointing third-quarter earnings, which were attributed partly to the impacts of hurricanes Harvey and Irma, along with a slowdown in the growth of patient demand.

The Wall Street Journal had earlier reported that KKR is nearing a deal to buy Envision.

Reporting by Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru and Liana Baker in New York; Editing by Lisa Shumaker

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