Health care costs are "a hungry tapeworm on the American economy," Berkshire Hathaway Chairman and CEO Warren Buffett says, and now his firm is teaming up with Amazon and JPMorgan Chase to create a new company with the goal of providing high quality health care at a lower cost.
The new company will be "free from profit-making incentives and constraints" as it tries to find ways to cut costs and boost satisfaction with the health care plan for employees of Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Chase. The trio unveiled their new venture in a news release.
"The initial focus of the new company will be on technology solutions that will provide U.S. employees and their families with simplified, high-quality and transparent healthcare at a reasonable cost," the companies said.
The enterprise unites three of the largest and most envied companies in their respective sectors — from retail to banking, and including Berkshire's wide portfolio of companies such as Geico and Fruit of the Loom. And in Buffett, Amazon's Jeff Bezos and JPMorgan's Jamie Dimon, the companies also have veteran leaders who have shown an ability to solve vexing business problems.
The three CEOs say they're aware of the enormous problem they face.
"The health care system is complex, and we enter into this challenge open-eyed about the degree of difficulty," said Jeff Bezos, Amazon founder and CEO. "Hard as it might be, reducing health care's burden on the economy while improving outcomes for employees and their families would be worth the effort."
JPMorgan's Dimon said, "The three of our companies have extraordinary resources, and our goal is to create solutions that benefit our U.S. employees, their families and, potentially, all Americans."
Details such as the company's name, base of operations and long-term leadership weren't included in a joint news release about the new company that was sent out Tuesday morning.
At the start, the new company will be led by executives from each of the troika of giant firms: Marvelle Sullivan Berchtold, a managing director of JPMorgan Chase; Todd Combs, an investment officer of Berkshire Hathaway; and Beth Galetti, a senior vice president at Amazon.