Private equity major Actis is backing US-based ConJoin Group in a $250 million acquisition of healthcare IT and business services provider PHNS. ConJoin Group helps turn around and speed up growth of under-performing IT and business services companies.

Dallas-based PHNS specializes in healthcare IT and business process systems spanning data centers, help desk, telephony, clinical transformation, audit and all aspects of secure health information management. With the deal, PHNS will ramp up existing product offering. ConJoin believes that the recent US legislation have put increased pressure on healthcare providers to improve, upgrade and modernize IT standards.

The ConJoin Group, which led by former Wipro executive Richard Garnik, has turned around companies like Avotus Corporation, which is involved in telecom expense management systems. ConJoin outsourced all the back end work and reportedly improve EBITDA by $10 million in three months of the loss-making firm. ConJoin has offices in Boston, Toronto, Dallas and its centers in Mumbai and Hyderabad.

“The ConJoin Group saw a significant opportunity to dramatically scale up operations and improve the PHNS product offering in response to unprecedented North American demand for healthcare IT services. The ConJoin Group’s global delivery model will prove a key point of

competitive advantage for the company going forward,” said Richard S. Garnick, who will also be the new CEO of PHNS.

“This deal builds on a deep tradition of Actis investing in the BPO sector, building on the success of Daksh (exited 2005) and our recent investment in BPO and KPO provider Integreon (February 2010). Supporting the provision of a high quality service to healthcare providers aligns with both our investment thesis and our values,” said Actis South Asia head JM Trivedi.

The Conjoin Group and Actis were advised by Jefferies & Co., Clifford Chance LLP, Hunton & Williams and Duff & Phelps. PHNS was advised by William Blair and Company and Jones Day.

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