Benchmark Senior Living recently announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to form an $890 million partnership with Health Care REIT, Inc. (NYSE: HCN) where the partnership will include 34 Benchmark senior housing communities in six New England states, totaling 3,009 units. As part of the agreement, HCN will own a 95 percent partnership interest and Benchmark Senior Living will own the remaining 5 percent interest and continue to operate the communities under a management contract. Through the partnership, Benchmark Senior Living will become the largest operator in Health Care REIT’s portfolio.
"This partnership will continue to enhance Health Care REIT’s growth potential in an important market with a best-in-class operator. Benchmark is committed to improving the experience of senior living, as well as continuing to be one of the best places to work in the industry. At the same time, Benchmark is providing attractive returns for investors," said George L. Chapman, Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President of Health Care REIT. "The Benchmark management team has produced exceptional net operating income growth despite a challenging economic climate. We look forward to the potential for future growth with Benchmark."
The Benchmark portfolio includes communities which provide services for Independent Living, Traditional Assisted Living, Specialized Services for the Memory Impaired, along with Respite Stay programs. There are 14 located in Connecticut, 13 in Massachusetts, 3 in Rhode Island, 2 in New Hampshire and one in Vermont and Maine respectively.
"This is a wonderful development for Benchmark, and for our residents and communities throughout New England," said Thomas H. Grape, Benchmark’s chairman and CEO. "Health Care REIT is one of the nation’s premier investors in the field and their goals for excellence in the senior living marketplace are perfectly aligned with ours. It’s all one could hope for in a business partnership."