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UPDATE 2-Athenahealth to conduct strategic review amid investor pressure

(Adds shares, comments from analysts, investor and Elliott)

Aug 1 (Reuters) - Athenahealth Inc said it would conduct a strategic review of its operations, more than two months after investor Elliott Management disclosed a stake in the healthcare software provider with the aim of pushing operational and strategic changes at the company.

The company's shares were up 4 percent at $143.68 in early trading on Tuesday.

Athenahealth said the review takes into account the input of its shareholders, who represent a significant majority of outstanding shares.

Hedge fund Elliott Management, which disclosed a 9.2 percent stake in the company in May, declined to comment.

Athenahealth, whose CFO stepped down last month, said it plans to separate the roles of chairman and chief executive and is working to recruit an independent chairman.

Co-founder Jonathan Bush, a cousin to former U.S. President George W. Bush, will remain as the chief executive of the company.

Athenahealth said it would also create the role of president, who will be responsible for the execution of the company's business operations.

Leerink analyst David Larsen said the move was largely positive and sees it as significant evidence of Bush's receptiveness to Elliott's desires for changes.

Athenahealth said it has started a comprehensive review of its operations, cost structure and capital allocation and has identified about $100 million in cost-savings opportunities.

"It (Athena) needs a management team and operating plan that can successfully tackle the next stage of growth," said Henry Ellenbogen, portfolio manager, T. Rowe Price New Horizons Fund.

"This plan is a large step in the right direction."

The company, which reported better-than-expected quarterly profit last month, said it would invest in its fast-growing hospital and network services businesses.

"While we are positive on the cost savings, which should help drive operating margin, we think that the shares already reflect the positive outlook," Cowen and Co analyst Charles Rhyee said in a note.

Up to Monday's close, the stock had risen 30 percent since Elliott Management disclosed its stake in May. (Reporting by Ankur Banerjee in Bengaluru and Carl O' Donnell in New York; Editing by Supriya Kurane)