Joseph Salamon, News Editor

Health insurance company Cigna purchased locally headquartered holding company Express Scripts for approximately $67 billion on March 8. The two companies put out a joint press release on the day of the agreement, detailing the deal and what it may mean for both companies moving forward.

In the deal, Cigna will be buying Express Scripts for nearly $52 billion while also taking on Express Scripts’ debt of nearly $15 billion. According to the joint press release, the transaction was approved by both companies’ board of directors, but could take up to the end of the year to take full effect.

Express Scripts headquarters moved from Maryland Heights to the University of Missouri-St. Louis’ campus in 2007 and has been a staple to UMSL and a major economic driver to the surrounding community since it’s relocation over a decade ago.

According to Brian Feldt of the St. Louis Post Dispatch, a 30-acre plot of land partially owned by UMSL right next to the Express Scripts headquarters became a local topic of conversation since March 8, as developers are unsure of Cigna’s desire to keep jobs in St. Louis. The existence of Express Scripts plays a big role in the marketing plan to sell the plot of land.

Though nothing is finalized, the joint press release from the companies implied that, though the combined headquarters will be at Cigna in Bloomfield, Conn., the Express Scripts branch will still be headquartered in St. Louis.

The press release also stated that at closing, which could be as late as December 31, the “combined company will 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.”

For more information on the merger, visit their website which offers video, press releases, infographics, and more.