American Medical Alert to be acquired by UK's Tunstall Healthcare

By Eric Wicklund
10:33 AM

Telehealth providers aren’t just looking to cross state lines these days to deliver needed care. Now they’re looking overseas.

The American Medical Alert Corporation, a New York-based provider of remote health monitoring and communication services, has entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by the Tunstall Healthcare Group Limited, one of England’s largest telehealth and telecare providers. The deal is worth roughly $82.3 million.

AMAC operates two business divisions – Health and Safety Monitoring Systems (HSMS), which includes patient monitoring devices and services such as personal emergency monitoring systems (PERS), mobile PERS, medication management and telehealth; and Telephony-Based Communication Services (TBCS), which operates nine U.S.-based communication centers under the local names HLINK OnCall, North Shore TAS, Live Message America, ACT Teleservice, MD OnCall, Capitol Medical Bureau, American MediConnect, Alpha Message Center and Phone Screen.

Shares for AMAC jumped almost 50 percent on Friday morning, prior to the market’s opening, following the late Thursday announcement – a marked change in fortune for the company. AMAC had reported a second-quarter decrease in profit of 78 percent, due to higher costs offsetting revenue, and has seen its stock drop 10 percent over the past year.

Tunstall, which provides integrated telehealth and telecare services for home, assisted living and specialist care environments, hospital communication systems and monitoring services, operates in more than 30 countries, supporting roughly 2.5 million people.

“We believe the decision by the board to merge with Tunstall is good for shareholders, employees and our customers,” said Jack Rhian, AMAC’s president and chief executive officer, in a press release. “Tunstall’s longstanding culture of engineering excellence, technological innovation and commitment to providing seniors with the tools to live independently is perfectly aligned with AMAC’s mission.

"By joining with Tunstall," he added, "AMAC will have unprecedented access to its world-class engineering and product portfolio as well as its global operating resources. This transaction will allow AMAC to rapidly accelerate the scope of our portfolio in both remote patient monitoring and call center solutions thereby benefiting our entire customer base.”

“AMAC will make a great addition to the Tunstall Group," said Gil Baldwin, Tunstall’s CEO. "We share the same vision and complement each other in a number of areas. AMAC will support our ambitious growth plans in the United States. As one of the largest providers of PERS in the U.S. with 75,000 subscribers nationwide and a strong reach within hospital systems, home healthcare, government agencies and senior living facilities, I believe there will be far reaching benefits for all of our customers, partners and employees of the group.”

In the deal, unanimously approved by AMAC’s board of directors, Tunstall will acquire all of AMAC’s outstanding shares for $8.55 per share in cash without interest, representing a premium of about 50 percent above AMAC’s closing share price on Sept. 22. Stockholders will also get a contingent cash payment should AMAC sell its interest in the Lifecomm joint venture, among other conditions.

The transaction is expected to be completed before the end of this year.