Benefitfocus acquires BeliefNetworks

Staff Report
Published June 18, 2010

Benefitfocus has acquired BeliefNetworks Inc., a developer of software that analyzes consumer behavior and marketing results.

The acquisition includes three patent applications and proprietary software code and adds advanced data mining, semantic intelligence and machine learning to Benefitfocus' existing web-based platform.

Benefitfocus and BeliefNetworks are headquartered in Charleston. Benefitfocus, which has an office in Greenville, offers employers, health and voluntary carriers, brokers and consumers a single web-based platform for benefit shopping, enrollment, management and industry-standard data exchange. In its 10th year of operation, Benefitfocus continues to create innovative software for the healthcare and voluntary benefits market.

"Semantic intelligence will redefine the healthcare industry by proactively connecting consumers, insurers and benefit plans to promote personalized coverage and support for healthy behaviors," said Shawn Jenkins, Benefitfocus president and CEO. "We are fortunate to have obtained this technology from one of the leading companies in the field."

BeliefNetworks' unique content and analytic solutions will extend Benefitfocus' current offerings to guide customers in making informed decisions about their benefit elections. In addition, BeliefNetworks' technology will enable Benefitfocus to surface emerging trends and behaviors of interest to both consumers and insurers. For example, consumers can opt to have the content of their individual health profile scanned in order to receive recommendations for benefit selection and suggest behavior changes to improve their personal health and wellness. All recommendations adhere to HIPAA regulations.

BeliefNetworks Chief Technology Officer Ted Tanner, Jr. joins Benefitfocus as vice president of core systems. Tanner is a veteran of several successful Silicon Valley startups and also has held architect positions at Apple and Microsoft,

Also joining Benefitfocus is BeliefNetworks President Lisa Maki, who becomes director of design management. The rest of the BeliefNetworks team becomes part of the Benefitfocus research and development division.

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