Emis Group has bought electronic messaging and order communications supplier Indigo 4 Systems Limited for £3.2m.

The clinical software supplier, which is the market leader in primary care systems, acquired Indigo 4 in a £3.2m cash deal with a further £0.5m payable if performance targets are hit.

The acquisition will significantly enhance Emis’ position in the electronic orders and results messaging from and back to GPs.

Indigo 4’s three core products are: Keystone, which provides translation and messaging of clinical and administrative data such as pathology and radiology; tQuest, an electronic blood and test requesting system for GPs; and Review, a clinical data repository for pathology, radiology and retinology.

Chris Spencer, chief executive of Emis, said the most recent purchase supports the company’s strategy of “providing connected healthcare systems”.

“It provides even more scope for the Group’s comprehensive integration of primary and secondary care using a tried and tested platform, he said.

Spencer said that Indigo 4 supported the delivery of about 50% of blood test requests and results to and from GPs.

According to Emis around 150 NHS and private healthcare organisations use systems supplied by  Indigo 4.

The purchase of pharmacy and e-prescribing software specialist Ascribe in September last year, in a £57.5m deal, has been the company’s largest acquisition to date.

Last week Emis reported it has made “positive contributions” to its bottom line, and the company has reduced its net debt from £13.5m on 31 December 2013 to £0.1m as of 30 June 2014 due to strong cash flow. 

The company also bought Digital Healthcare in August last year in a £3.1m deal.

Emis also recently launched new software to enable community pharmacies to view patients’ electronic GP records, following a push from pharmacists for better access to clinical information.