From the mHealthNews archive

Things looking up for Castlight?

By Eric Wicklund

Castlight Health isn't about to fade into the sunset just yet.

The mHealth engagement company that has been struggling since going public last year has announced a significant deal. Fifth Third Bank, a Cincinnati-based financial services company, has announced that it will deploy Castlight's Enterprise Healthcare Cloud to help its employees manage their healthcare benefits.

"Fifth Third has approximately 14,000 employees enrolled in our benefits programs, and it was important that we could give each of them a way to simply and easily make healthcare choices that worked for them and their families," Chris Sonneman, senior vice president and director of the banks' Total Rewards program, said in a press release. "Castlight has been a great tool for educating and informing employees. Over time, especially, Castlight will help our people better navigate the complex world of healthcare. It will lead to better decisions that are customized for each employee's unique situation."

"We are honored to have Fifth Third Bank as part of our diverse family of customers," Castlight co-founder and CEO Giovanni Colella, MD, said in the release. "The Castlight Enterprise Healthcare Cloud is a perfect match for Fifth Third Bank's enterprise healthcare needs. Our EHM platform will provide their employees with what they need to become savvy healthcare consumers, and in the process, increase the quality of their healthcare experience."

Castlight officials say some 170 companies from 25 industries are using their platform, which serves as a "one-stop shop" for healthcare benefits and is designed to help both employers and employees reduce healthcare expenses.

The spotlight shone brightly on seven-year-old company when it went public in March 2014, with Colella calling it "an iconic company" and stock prices soaring to $37.25 within three days. But the company has struggled a bit since then, with prices dipping as low as $6.52 in recent months. The stock is currently trading around $8.

While analysts such as Motley Fool's Todd Campbell said the stock plunge may have been a factor of an overly optimistic market, they also noted that the future isn't overly pessimistic if the company can find its footing.

Partnerships like the one announced with Fifth Third Bank just might fit that bill.