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Sykes HealthPlan Services plans IPO

Sykes HealthPlan Services Inc., a joint venture between two of the Tampa Bay area's younger public companies, plans to raise up to $115.1-million in an initial public offering.

Sykes HealthPlan is an outsourcing company that contracts with other companies to take over their health care management services and administration of employee benefits.

The company, which has its headquarters in Louisville, Ky., was created in December by HealthPlan Services Corp. and Sykes Enterprises Inc. Each of the partners chipped in $3-million and agreed to lend the new venture up to $9-million more.

The business has grown through the acquisition of three companies in related fields, Health International Inc., OMS Inc. and Prudential Insurance Co.'s Prudential Service Bureau. Combined financial results show a loss of $5.3-million on $59.7-million in revenues last year.

The joint venture allows the two companies to apply their specialties to the growing market for outsourced services. HealthPlan Services is a distributor and administrator of health care benefits, while Sykes operates call centers providing technical support for users of computer hardware and software.

Details regarding the proposed price, number of shares or the size of the offering were not included in the company's registration statement filed Friday with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The underwriting group for the offering will be managed by Merrill Lynch & Co., Raymond James & Associates Inc., Furman Selz LLC and NationsBanc Montgomery Securities LLC.

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