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Activist investor Paul Singer takes stake in Athenahealth, and shares surge

  • "The securities of the company are significantly undervalued and represent an attractive investment opportunity," Singer said in an SEC filing.
  • An Athenahealth representative, in a statement sent to CNBC, said, "We have great confidence in the Company and where we are headed."

Athenahealth shares surged more than 18 percent Thursday after activist hedge-fund manager Paul Singer of Elliott Associates disclosed a 9.2 percent stake in the company.

Singer said "the securities of the company are significantly undervalued and represent an attractive investment opportunity," according to an SEC filing.

The filing also said Singer expects "there are numerous operational and strategic opportunities to maximize shareholder value and the holder will be seeking to engage in a dialogue with the company's board regarding these matters."

Singer and Elliott Associates may submit plans, which could include seeking changes in management and a sale of the company or some of its assets.

"We are aware of Elliot's filing and look forward to talking with them to hear their views about the Company and discuss the actions we are taking to drive enhanced growth and value creation for all athenahealth shareholders," said an Athenahealth representative, in a statement sent to CNBC. "We have great confidence in the Company and where we are headed."

Elliott Associates representatives were not immediately available for comment.

The hedge fund has been an aggressive activist over the years, often targeting the company's CEO in its campaign.

Athenahealth, a provider of online services for doctors and hospitals, was founded by Jonathan Bush, its current CEO and president of the company.