March 8 (UPI) -- Health insurer Cigna announced plans Thursday to buy pharmaceutical benefits company Express Scripts in a $67 billion deal.
Cigna's offer consists of nearly $50 in cash and stock of the combined company for each Express Scripts share, amounting to $96 per share.
"Cigna's acquisition of Express Scripts brings together two complementary customer-centric services companies, well-positioned to drive greater quality and affordability for customers," Cigna CEO David Cordani said in a statement.
"Together, we will create an expanded portfolio of health services, delivering greater consumer choice, closer alignment between the customer and health care provider, and more personalized value. This combination will create significant benefits to society."
Upon closing the deal, Cigna shareholders will own 64 percent of the combined company and Express Scripts shareholders will own the remaining 36 percent. Cordani will lead the combined company.
The combined entity pledged to make an "incremental investment of $200 million in its charitable foundation, to support the communities in which it operates, and with the continued focus on improving societal health."
"Together, our two organizations will help make the healthiest choices the easiest choices, putting health and pharmacy services within reach of everyone we serve," Express Scripts CEO Tim Wentworth said.
The merger comes after a similar $69 billion merger between CVS Health and Aetna was announced in December.