WellPoint , the health-benefits provider based in Indianapolis, said it will restructure the company into 3 new units, making operations more customer-focused.
October 15 is a busy day for WLP, as the company will restructure itself around 3 entities: a commercial accounts-focused unit; consumer-focused unit; and a new Comprehensive Health Solutions Business unit to concentrate on health-care cost and quality.
October 15 also marks the resignation of John Watts Jr. as the company's president of its combined commercial and consumer business. Watts will remain with the company until the end of the year, still receiving his $750,000 salary.
Ken Goulet, the current company president for national accounts, will head up the new commercial unit while Dijuana Lewis, former president of WLP's local group business, will head up the new unit. Joan Herman, currently president of the company's specialty senior and state-sponsored businesses, will become CEO of the new consumer business unit until her retirement slated mid-2008. WellPoint said it plans to have a more permanent successor in her place by that time.
In addition to announcing the company's morphing anatomy, it also reaffirmed its 2007 earnings forecast calling for net income of $5.55 a share, matching the Thomson Financial analyst forecasts.
Investors didn't seem pleased, though, as WellPoint is presently down 1.68% to $77.62, still above the hard hit it took in early August after the acquisition of American Imaging Management (AIM), when it sank from $83 to $74.5 in nearly 10 days. Since April 20, 2007 the stock has been rejected at a trendline connecting a series of lower highs.