Goldman sells final stake in former independent-research partner

Goldman Sachs Group Inc received $32.5 million for its remaining stake in Epocrates Inc, after the healthcare technology company was acquired by athenahealth Inc , according to a securities filing on Friday.

Goldman had originally acquired 3 million shares in Epocrates for $40 million in 2007, as part of its plan to build out an independent-research arm called Hudson Street. The business sold institutional investors information from a variety of firms that collected data and performed market analysis.

Goldman acquired stakes in its Hudson Street partners as a bet that investor demand for independent research would rise. But the bank eventually dismantled the business because big trading clients were less interested in paying for the research than Goldman had predicted.

Epocrates was Goldman's last remaining investment related to the Hudson Street business. The bank cashed in 2.8 million shares for $11.75 apiece, according to terms of athenahealth's buyout. Goldman had also sold $4 million worth of stock when Epocrates went public in January 2011, bringing its total stock sales to $36.5 million.

(Reporting by Lauren Tara LaCapra; Editing by Richard Chang)