Centene becomes biggest Medicaid provider after ‘banner’ year

A strong performance in the past year by Clayton-based Centene Corp. allowed the company to take the top spot among local publicly traded companies for the third straight year, according to a Post-Dispatch analysis.

The ranking is based on financial performance, including return on equity, size of revenue, revenue growth and profit growth.

Centene made a key acquisition in 2015, a $6.8 billion deal to buy Health Net Inc., that transformed it into the nation’s largest provider of Medicaid health care plans and doubled the number of people that the company covers.

Centene also managed to beat Wall Street earnings expectations each quarter last year, recording big gains in both revenue and profit. Revenue for 2015 grew 37 percent to $22.8 billion, and profit swelled 30 percent to $355 million, all thanks to the addition of 1 million members across the country.

Michael Neidorff, CEO of the managed care company, called it a “banner year.”

The Health Net deal didn’t close until earlier this year, so Centene can expect to see revenue grow by more than 60 percent in 2016. The company will be in a strong position to take the top spot again in next year’s rankings.

Read more: St. Louis Post-Dispatch


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