3M Cos. said Thursday it is exploring strategic alternatives for its health information systems business, a unit with about $730 million in annual sales of software and services to doctors, hospitals, insurance firms and government agencies.
The business has been growing steadily and is a leader in computer-assisted coding products, particularly those doctors and staff can use operate through voice recognition. It is smaller player in other niches of the health technology market.
The company, based in Maplewood, hired Goldman Sachs to assist in the process, which could lead to the sale of the business, though 3M cautioned no decisions have been made.
“As part of our ongoing portfolio management process, 3M is exploring alternatives for our health information systems business, a recognized industry leader in health care coding software, services, and analytics,” Inge Thulin, 3M’s chief executive, said in a statement.
The firm aims to complete the process and possible transaction by the end of March 2016.
The business provides health care data aggregation, analysis, and strategic services to health-related businesses and agencies. 3M said its growth rate exceeded 10 percent over the past three-, five- and 10-year periods.
The business resides in 3M’s health care group, one of its five major business groups. That group accounted for $5.5 billion, or about 17 percent, of 3M’s $31.8 billion in sales last year and was the fastest-growing unit of the five.