Humana Goes Calling

DETROIT-Humana, one of the largest managed healthcare companies in the U.S., is contacting Midwest agencies about its account, which sources said the company is valuing at $15-22 million.
The Louisville, Ky.-based Humana company has hired Cheryl Fink in Floyd Knob, Ind., to conduct what Humana officials characterized as “preliminary fact-finding.”
Fink has contacted as many as 50 agencies, all in the Midwest, by telephone, according to sources.
Agencies were asked to provide the client with general capability information. The deadline to send material to Fink was two weeks ago.
Eileen Hutchison, Humana’s director of marketing communications, said she has not decided whether to hold a formal review.
“I’m beginning to think about whether I’m going to look for another agency,” she said. “I haven’t made the decision yet.”
The healthcare provider’s current agency of record is Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos, based in Boston.
Hutchison said she is gathering information only on agencies in the Midwest because of their proximity to company headquarters and “because I happen to like Midwest agencies.” Hill, Holliday executive vice president Don White, who manages the account, referred questions to the client.
“We have some real specific needs, because we do a lot of direct response advertising,” Hutchison said. “So we’re trying to get a feel for what’s around. We’re working with Hill, Holiday right now.
“But we’re not sure what we’re going to do. We’re growing, and our needs are changing. You just want to make sure you’re working with the right people. I’m just trying to see what’s around,” she said.
Humana has approximately 4.6 million health plan members in 22 major markets nationwide, which are primarily located in 17 states. -with Trevor Jensen