Chicago - BlueCross BlueShield Venture Partners, L.P., a corporate venture fund that is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, and Sandbox Industries announced a $5-million investment in Initiate Systems, Inc., a provider of master data management (MDM) solutions for health information exchange.

BlueCross BlueShield Venture Partners is a newly formed, $116-million corporate venture fund to which 11 independent Blue Cross and/or Blue Shield companies have already committed capital. The fund invests in technologies, products, and services in the healthcare industry that promote efficiency, lower costs, and improve options for consumers. In a unique partnership, the fund is managed jointly by representatives from the Association, the participating Blue Plans, and Sandbox Industries, a Chicago-based venture capital firm.

Paul Brown, Managing Director of BlueCross BlueShield Ventures, Inc., said: “We are pleased to launch this fund, which enables BlueCross BlueShield Venture Partners to be at the forefront of technological innovation in healthcare. We selected Initiate Systems as our inaugural investment because Initiate has proven through over 100 healthcare implementations that its software enables hospitals and independent delivery networks to deliver safe, responsive patient care while increasing productivity and cost effectiveness.”

The first investment the fund has made is in Initiate Systems, a company that offers technology to enable organizations to leverage and share critical data assets. Initiate software is designed to enable strategic initiatives such as electronic health records (EHR) and clinical portals that help improve efficiencies, increase patient and provider satisfaction, reduce errors that result from poor data quality, and create an interoperable environment that allows healthcare organizations to better serve their communities. It can also help healthcare organizations, including payers and providers, save millions of dollars in administrative costs.

“Initiate Systems is honored to be the first investment made by BlueCross BlueShield Venture Partners,” said Bill Conroy, President and CEO of Initiate Systems. “The Blue Cross and Blue Shield brand is among the most respected and recognized in the healthcare industry, which is why we feel this investment demonstrates confidence in our company as a market leader and our software as a proven, enabling technology for health information exchange.”

Source: Initiate Systems Inc.

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