Missouri Minute: Centene plans $15 billion acquisition

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Centene to acquire rival firm for $15.3 billion
The Clayton-based health insurer’s acquisition of WellCare Health Plans is expected to bolster its Medicare and Medicaid business while reducing exposure to Affordable Care Act exchanges. (Reuters)

KC-based Tradewind sells to multinational energy giant
Tradewind Energy, one of the top U.S. wind and solar utility developers, will add to the Rome-based Enel Group’s existing 100 renewable energy plants around the world. (Kansas City Business Journal)

Consulting giant to set up shop in St. Louis area
McKinsey & Co., a $10 billion global consultancy based in New York, has found interim office space in Clayton and has started recruiting new staff. (St. Louis Business Journal)

Stenger hires Greitens defense attorney amid federal probe
Scott Rosenblum has confirmed he was hired by St. Louis County Executive Steve Stenger while Ed Dowd of Dowd Bennett seeks a contract with the county to assist in compliance with a federal subpoena. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

Federal flood aid delayed until water recedes
The National Weather Service said that while the Missouri River level is going down, up to 2.5 inches of rain is predicted after Thursday. (Kansas City Star)

Parkville businesses get boost from flood sightseers
One sweets shop says business is so brisk that the store is running out of fudge. (KCUR)

St. Louis jobs chief says agency is trying to be ‘very transparent’
The St. Louis Agency on Training and Employment is being audited by the U.S. Department of Labor, the state auditor and accounting firm KPMG after current and former employees alleged that time sheets have been falsified. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

KC-area call center to close office, offer remote work
Concentrix, a global customer service company based in South Carolina, said a “majority” of its 179 employees at the Olathe, Kansas, facility will have a chance to work from home. (KCUR)

Progressives push for ballot measure to expand Medicaid
A new group called Healthcare for Missouri will campaign for a ballot measure in 2020. (Springfield News-Leader)


In their words

Being entrepreneurial about supporting entrepreneurs Maria Meyers founded KCSourceLink, a network of more than 240 business-building organizations across the Kansas City area. She has grown that into SourceLink, a network spanning more than 100 communities. In a guest commentary, Meyers reflects on key ingredients to that growth, from understanding the market to avoiding complacency.


Say that again

“If we screw up, we’re the ones liable. You know what’s far more regressive than a 3/8-cent sales tax? Poverty and crime. Winding up in jail and not being able to dig your way out because you don’t have the skill set or money. It’s time for a change.”

At his final State of the City address Tuesday night, Kansas City Mayor Sly James dedicated much of his 40-minute speech to pushing for a sales tax to fund universal pre-K education, KCUR reports. James has championed the issue almost single-handedly, without the support of area public schools and only one endorsement out of 11 mayoral candidates. A ballot vote on the sales tax will be held April 2.


Go figure

171 percent
That’s how much the cost of hay jumped, from $35 to $95 per bale, due to higher demand after last summer’s drought. Missouri cattle farmers are still reeling from this increase, which is just another factor constraining farmers across the state, the Columbia Missourian reports.


Send tweet

— Dustin Colquitt (@dustincolquitt2) March 28, 2019

Convinced you just saw Kansas City Chiefs punter Dustin Colquitt hawking newspapers on your morning commute? You may be right. He’s among the volunteers selling papers and flags Thursday as part of Greater Kansas City Day, the charity fundraiser held annually in conjunction with the Kansas City Royals’ home opener. Play ball!


Hello, my name is

Thomas Graf
St. Louis-based Ascension Medical Group has named Graf, a seasoned health care executive, as its new president effective April 15, the St. Louis Business Journal reports. Graf previously served as chief medical officer and vice president of health care transformation at Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey.


It’s been a pleasure doing business with you this morning.


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