Monday, May 31, 2010

The Carlyle Group and Tenet: Two Ethics Abusers in a Bidding War

HealthScope, an Australian hospital company, should conduct due diligence on its bidders. Their suitors include:

1. The Carlyle Group, TPG and Blackstone
3. Tenet Healthcare

Two firms on this list are serial ethics abusers. The Carlyle Group has a long history of "pay to play" in the pension fund arena, while Tenet Healthcare paid a $900 million fine to Medicare and Medicaid.

They share more than a questionable ethics history. Between The Carlyle Group and Tenet, 35 patients perished after Hurricane Katrina in Memorial Medical Center. This fact was omitted from the White House Lessons Learned report.

A year after Frances Townsend's Katrina whitewash was foisted on the public, Tenet appointed Jeb Bush to their board of directors. Records show Quinn Gillespie & Associates, discussed corporate governance changes with the Executive Office of the President in early 2006.

Florida Governor Jeb Bush fined Tenet for abuses, before joining the board as a highly paid member. In three short years Jeb acquired 215,000 shares of beneficially owned Tenet stock, worth $1.2 million.

As for the Carlyle Group, they're vigorously defending lawsuits related to their 25 Katrina deaths.

Will HealthScope find any of this? My hope is they do.