Best Buy has acquired Critical Signal Technologies, a provider of personal emergency response systems and telehealth monitoring services for at-home seniors, and will open a new GreatCall customer service center.

Best Buy Co. Inc. continues to grow its footprint in healthcare ecommerce and digital health services with the acquisition of another company and the ongoing expansion of GreatCall, a San Diego provider of cell phone and related digital home healthcare services to seniors.

Best Buy also is settling in to make a long run at building market share in healthcare, chief financial officer and strategic transformation officer Corie Barry told analysts on the company’s recent first quarter earnings call.

“Health is a bit of a longer term value driver for us but we absolutely like what we are starting to see in health, Barry told analysts based on a transcript from “There are 50 million people over 65 and that number is going to grow more than 50% in the next 20 years, and with GreatCall, we felt like we really acquired a great asset with already 900,000 members and already a good profitable business.”

We absolutely like what we are starting to see in health.

Barry, who is replacing outgoing Hubert Joly as CEO on June 11, took steps to build out its healthcare business with the acquisition of Critical Signal Technologies, a provider of personal emergency response systems and telehealth monitoring services for at-home seniors. Critical Signal Technologies, which says it serves a customer base of more than 100,000 seniors, was quietly acquired by Best Buy around May 3 for a yet-to-be disclosed amount.

Critical Signal Technologies will be rolled into GreatCall, Best Buy says. Best Buy made the acquisition to round out its suite of communications and services for the senior home healthcare market, Barry says. “We have required a senior-focused health services company called Critical Signal Technologies to help scale the commercial monitoring business,” she told analysts. “Coverage under Medicare Advantage plans is helpful to growing our commercial business because it allows us to engage with insurers and build our service into their plans as a way to both improve their member experience and help them save on costs—CST will help facilitate our access to in penetration of the commercial market.


Medicare Advantage health plans pay for managed health care based on a monthly fee basis. In the first quarter Best Buy also began making plans to open another GreatCall customer contact center in Texas. The new contact center will be based in San Antonio and employ 100 service agents, Barrie told analysts. “We are excited about the prospects of combining CST’s services and relationships with the existing GreatCall business,” she told analysts. “More broadly, this tuck-in acquisition, together with GreatCall, complements our existing capabilities like Geek Squad and In-Home Advisors to better serve both the seniors in their home and those who support them like payers and providers.

Best Buy reported web sales of $1.310 billion for the first quarter ended May 5, an increase of 14.5% from $1.144 billion in the prior year. It didn’t breakout GreatCall sales.

But Best Buy will continue to look for other ways to grow its in-home digital health services business for seniors, Barry said. “Helping older Americans live a more independent life in their homes with the help of technology aligns very well to what we are trying to accomplish overall,” she told analysts.