Bloom Health, a Minneapolis start-up hoping to create a new niche in employee health insurance, said Wednesday it has raised $5 million in venture capital from Blue Cross Blue Shield Venture Partners and Sandbox Industries.

The firm aims to help companies and employees choose and pay for heath benefits starting in the third quarter of 2010.

Bloom is helmed by former Definity Health and RedBrick Health executive Abir Sen.

Blue Cross Blue Shield Venture Partners is owned by Blue Cross and Blue Shield health plans around the country. Sandbox Industries is a venture capital firm in Chicago.