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New Venture Capital Firms Backs Bright Health

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Andrew Slavitt (Photo: House Energy) Andrew Slavitt (Photo: House Energy)

Andrew Slavitt’s new health care venture capital firm is investing in a health insurer that was started by some of the people whose work led to the birth of health savings accounts (HSAs).

The firm, Town Hall Ventures, announced Thursday that it has invested some of its capital in Bright Health Inc. The amount was not disclosed.

(Related: Startups Lead a New Rush Into ACA’s Now-Profitable Markets)

Slavitt has been the head of HealthAllies, which was an old UnitedHealth Group Inc. specialty benefits unit.

Later, Slavitt ran UnitedHealth’s Optum health services unit.

From 2015 through 2017, he was the acting head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the agency that oversees Medicare, Medicaid and Affordable Care Act public exchange plan services. He left CMS after Donald Trump became president.

Slavitt founded Town Hall Ventures, which is based in Minneapolis, together with Trevor Price and David Whelan. Price is the head of Oxeon Partners, an executive search firm. David Whelan has been the head of Oxeon’s own venture capital unit. Oxeon Ventures.

Town Hall Ventures invests in nonprofit health care providers and health plans. The firm says it is especially interested in investing in organizations that serve the elderly, people with chronic conditions, and people who are eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid.

The company reported Thursday that it has now raised $115 million, or 50% more than it estimated in May, when it began raising funds. The company has now closed its first investment fund.

Bright Health

The list of companies that Town Hall Ventures has funded includes six health care providers. Bright Health is the only heath insurer on the list.

Bob Sheehy, the former chief executive officer of UnitedHealth’s UnitedHealthcare unit, founded Bright Health in 2016, in Minneapolis, with Kyle Rolfing and Tom Valdivia.

Rolfing was a co-founder of Definity Health, one of the companies that developed an early personal health account program. His work at Definity helped lead to the rise of the HSA.

Valdivia, who is a medical doctor, was Definity’s chief medical officer.

Bright Health has started out by selling individual major medical coverage in Alabama, Arizona, Colorado and Tennessee.

The company sells Medicare Advantage plans in Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, New York state, Ohio and Tennessee.

In addition to Town Hall Ventures, other backers include New Enterprise Associates, Bessemer Ventures and Flare Capital Partners.

Bright Health has posted agent and agency appointment information here.

— Read Strange Bedfellows? Group Unites Old Foes in Hunt for Health Fixon ThinkAdvisor.

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