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In an effort to strengthen its presence in the state of Texas, health insurer UnitedHealth Group Inc. (UNH - Analyst Report) yesterday announced its plans to recruit approximately 1500 employees there.
At present UnitedHealth has approximately 11,000 employees in the state of Texas. The company will create 115, 250, 800 and 330 new jobs across four cities namely Harlingen, San Antonio, Irving and Sugar Land, respectively.
The openings at Harlingen and San Antonio totaling 365 will support the Health benefits business segment at UnitedHealth. This is one of the most significant business segments of the company, called UnitedHealthcare, which accounts for more than two-thirds of the company’s total revenues.
Another 1100 positions in the cities of Irving and Sugar Land will serve UnitedHealth Group’s health services business segment, which is branded as Optum. Optum is further segregated into OptumHealth, OptumInsight and Optum Rx. The jobs created in the cities of Irving and Sugar Land will serve OptumHealth and Optum Rx, respectively.
The company is on a hiring spree in a bid to serve its subsidiary Connextions at Irving. UnitedHealth acquired Connextions in August last year. Connextions is a leading technology and service provider in the health care industry that helps organizations attract and serve consumers building strong relationship along the way.
The addition of 1500 employees in Texas will expand UnitedHealth’s business. The company already has a significant presence in the state and has been serving Texans via its health care network of around 500 hospitals, more than 36,800 physicians and other care professionals.
UnitedHealth sees a significant business opportunity in Texas. The state is governed by Republican leader Rick Perry who is opposed to Obama’s Health Care Reform. The state has an uninsured population of approximately 25% of its total population.
Other health insurers like CIGNA Corp. (CI - Analyst Report) and Aetna Inc. (AET - Analyst Report) also provide their services in Texas. UnitedHealth currently retains a Zacks #3 Rank, which translates into a short-term Hold rating. We are also maintaining our long-term Neutral recommendation on its shares.
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