Brian Tanquilut, a senior analyst for healthcare services at Jefferies & Company, Inc., says fears that Glenview is mounting a takeover are overblown:
"Glenview is a savvy healthcare investor. It's just a deep value picking strategy and I wouldn't read too much into that," Tanquilut says. "They made a decision to invest in HMA given that HMA is the cheapest hospital stock today. I don't think people thought Glenview was going to try to take over HMA. That's not their M.O. They are a hedge fund, not a private equity shop. They have never been an activist shareholder. People who know Glenview and what they are doing never ever thought it was a takeover strategy, but it was an opportunistic play. It just so happens that because of the size of their investment they had to file and HMA read into it 'Holy cow! They filed for up to $2.2 billion worth of stock and we are a $2.7 billion company.' But for HMA it's the right thing to do on their part, which is to protect their shareholder base."
HMA made no mention of the shareholders rights plan in its announcement of Newsome's retirement, which takes effect July 31.
HMA operates 71 general acute care hospitals in small- to mid-sized markets in 15 states with approximately 11,500 licensed beds, more than 42,000 employees and a medical staff of 10,000 physicians.