Telehealth solutions provider Visionflex has signed a deal to merge with ASX-listed online health booking platform 1st Group.
WHAT THEY DO
The telehealth company designs, manufactures, and distributes a range of clinical telehealth devices and software that facilitate remote patient examinations.
On the other hand, 1st Group operates the MyHealth1st booking platform where patients can find, book, and manage their healthcare appointments. It runs on smart recall and reminders technology and features an automatic booking function and e-referral capabilities. The system is also integrated with market-leading practice management systems. 1st Group also runs a pet service website and an online corporate and government booking platform.
WHAT IT’S ABOUT
The proposed merger, according to a media release, seeks to combine their products to offer the market a comprehensive, integrated telehealth system for clinicians. This will see the integration of Visionflex’s diagnostic telehealth software and hardware solutions with 1st Group’s MyHealth1st booking portal.
Moreover, the companies will explore opportunities beyond healthcare consultations, such as private practice, hospitals, aged care, home care, regional and other forms of remote care operations.
“The proposed acquisition of Visionflex will bring substantial operational, financial and strategic benefits to both businesses and synergies for the merged entity,” they said.
Once Visionflex’s acquisition is completed, 1st Group will make a share placement to Adcock Private Equity, the telehealth firm’s biggest shareholder, to raise A$2.5 million ($1.8 million) as growth funding for their combined entity. It will later put up an entitlement offer to enable its investors to subscribe for shares at the same price as the placement.
The acquisition is conditional on the approval of 1st Group’s shareholders.
WHY IT MATTERS
“By combining 1st’s digital patient engagement and online appointment booking solutions with Visionflex’s video conferencing software and devices, we are creating a world-class solution to deliver end-to-end clinical telehealth services to almost anyone, almost anywhere,” 1st Group Managing Director Klaus Bartosch said in a separate statement.
With the planned merger, Visionflex co-founder and CEO Mike Harman said they are “poised to take advantage of the continued global growth in telehealth”. According to the latest market research by Precedence Research, the global telehealth market, which was estimated to be worth $40.3 billion last year, could reach $224.8 billion in value by 2030, rising at 19% CAGR from 2021. The increase in value, the report said, is mainly driven by the growing adoption of new health technologies during the pandemic.
THE LARGER TREND
In October, 1st Group raised around A$1 million ($700,000) following a one-for-three entitlement offer. It issued about 63.5 million shares worth 1.6 cents apiece. The capital raise was done to execute its strategy for the 2022 financial year.
In the same month, Visionflex and MediRecords announced their partnership for technology integration. The telehealth firm is combining its video conferencing platform Vision with the latter’s cloud-based EHR and practice management systems to form a video-conference telehealth system. This integration aims to enable remote patient monitoring via video telehealth using different health monitors.
The following month, 1st Group signed a deal to introduce its booking platform to two hospitals under St. John of God, one of the biggest Catholic non-profit hospitals in Australia. Visionflex also partnered with digital infrastructure specialist Syndeticom to offer its latest mobile telehealth product, which has been rolled out at care centres in the local health districts of Western NSW and Far West NSW.