The French retirement home company Orpea Group has agreed to buy the FirstCare retirement home collection from businessman Mervyn Smith in a deal valued at more than 100 million euros, propelling it to the rank of the leading private player in the sector in the State.
The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) has been informed in recent days that Orpea has acquired six retirement homes from FirstCare, three of which are on a campus in Glasnevin in north Dublin, two homes in Co Wicklow and one in Co Kildare.
A spokesperson for Orpea, listed in Paris, declined to give details of the deal, while a spokesperson for FirstCare also declined to comment beyond the list on CCPC’s website, claiming the transaction was subject to nondisclosure agreements as it was competitively evaluated. authority.
Four of the underlying buildings of the group of retirement homes were acquired in 2017 by a French real estate company, Promonial Reim, as part of a sale-leaseback transaction. Mr. Smith is known to own the two remaining buildings, Beneavin Lodge and Beneavin Manor, in the Glasnevin complex.
The six houses have 552 beds. The deal with Orpea is believed to also involve pipeline nursing home developments linked to Mr Smith.
The planned purchase comes just over a year after Orpea entered the Irish market through the TLC Nursing Home portfolio, consisting of 674 beds, for 150 million euros. He then purchased the Brindley Healthcare group of two-stage nursing homes, which gave him 574 additional rooms.
Brindley struck a deal last month to buy Belmont Care, a retirement home in Stillorgan, south Dublin, adding 161 more beds. In total, Orpea will have 1,961 beds after the completion of the FirstCare purchase, making it the largest private operator in a rapidly consolidating sector that has attracted a flood of European institutional investment in recent years.
The French group will overtake Moylam Healthcare, currently the market leader with around 1,600 beds, whose new Dublin-based private equity fund Cardinal Capital Group was taken over last year.
Industry sources said CBRE Ireland advised FirstCare, while CBRE Spain was acting for Orpea.
The latest major transaction comes four months after the agreed sale of Trinity Care, a more than 600-bed nursing home company majority-owned by businesswoman Anne Heraty and her husband Paul Carroll.
This agreement, worth between 150 million euros and 200 million euros, implied that the Spanish operator of retirement homes DomusVi agreed to take over the operating activities and that the Belgian real estate company Cofinimmo bought the properties. underlying.
Cofinimmo declared at the time that the Republic, with around 30,000 beds in nursing homes, was “less equipped than most other European countries” to cope with the aging of the population, thus offering an important opportunity for investment.
Orpea declared last year its intention to “continue to expand its assets in this country where the current supply is insufficient and where more than 10,000 additional beds must be built by 2031”.
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