Cigna discussed a potential acquisition of Centene in the final months of 2021, but nothing has come of the preliminary conversations, according to a Jan. 26 Bloomberg report.
There are no ongoing discussions regarding an acquisition, nor any indications that the 2021 conversations will be rekindled.
In light of regulatory hurdles, sources told Bloomberg that little market overlap makes the two companies a match to face limited resistance. However, Cigna likely would need to scale back its portfolio to close the deal.
Should acquisition talks resume, it could be the largest deal in the industry. The only two deals of similar scale would be Anthem's attempted $48 billion purchase of Cigna and Aetna's proposed $35 billion deal to buy Humana — both of which were blocked by antitrust regulators, according to Bloomberg.
The acquisition would give Cigna more access to government-sponsored markets, in which Centene is highly competitive.