Private equity firm Centerbridge Partners LP and health insurance giant Highmark Inc. are acquiring stakes in each others’ vision care businesses.
Centerbridge is purchasing the Davis Vision Inc. insurance business and a minority stake in Visionworks, an optical retail business, from HVHC Inc., a subsidiary of Highmark. Davis Vision will be combined with Centerbridge’s Superior Vision managed vision care portfolio company, and Highmark will acquire a minority stake in that combined company.
Terms of the deals were not disclosed. They are expected to close on the fourth quarter, if regulators approve. Dan Osnoss, managing director of Centerbridge, says he will work with Highmark in the coming months on the next phase of growth for the combined Davis Vision-Superior Vision company.
Centerbridge, a private investment management firm based in New York and London, manages $29 billion. Highmark Inc. operates health insurance plans covering more than 5 million members, and the company and its subsidiaries are among the top 10 largest health insurers in the U.S.
HVHC, based in San Antonio, was advised on the deal by Skadden Arps law.
In other vision related deals, Johnson & Johnson’s (NYSE: JNJ) bought Abbott Laboratories’ (NYSE: ABT) eye-surgery equipment unit and Novartis International AG (NYSE: AG) agreed to buy Encore Vision Inc.