Vestar Capital Partners has acquired healthcare ratings organization HealthGrades for approximately $294 million.
The New York-based firm purchased roughly 36 million shares in the company at a price of $8.20 per share.
HealthGrades provides ratings, profiles and cost information on US hospitals, physicians, nursing homes and prescription drugs.
Vestar made the investment from its fifth fund, which closed in 2005 on $3.65 billion and is approximately 80 percent invested. In the last 10 months, the firm has exited four healthcare investments made from its fourth fund, which closed on $2.5 billion in 1999.
“Healthcare is at the moment our largest vertical in terms of capital deployed,” Vestar managing director and co-founder Norman Alpert told PEO.
Other Vestar investments in the healthcare information and measurement sector include a 2008 buyout of improvement solutions provider Press Ganey and a 2006 growth equity investment in MediMedia, a content and marketing services provider.
In addition to healthcare, Vestar invests in industries including financial services and media and communications, in companies ranging in value from $250 million to $3 billion. The firm has total assets under management of $7 billion.
Vestar was founded in 1988 when seven principles of The First Boston Corporation’s management buyout group spun out from the firm.