Quadrum Global seized attention recently as one of the latest multifamily and hospitality developers to get into the senior housing space. Quadrum’s first project still is in the early stages, but the company has ambitions to become a strong brand in senior living and is taking steps to differentiate itself from the crowd of new entrants in the marketplace, including by creating a separate operating company, Quadrum leaders recently told SHN.
Favorable demographics and investment returns are attracting untested developers to the space—which is causing some concern among established players, including some that spoke at the recent Senior Housing News Summit in Chicago.
“Despite all the best efforts from those coming from multifamily and hospitality, they’re going to make mistakes,” said Kathryn A. Sweeney, co-founder and managing partner of Boston-based Blue Moon Capital Partners. “The inexperienced will create some stress against the experienced, and that will take some time to work its way through the system.”
Quadrum, an international development and private equity investment firm, has a portfolio of $2 billion in capital and real estate assets. The story behind how the company came to the senior housing sector might not reassure industry veterans; the firm essentially came across an opportunity and decided to take a leap.
“The truth is, a deal came up, and the deal was zoned for senior housing,” Seth Schumer, Quadrum’s director of U.S. investments, told SHN. “So, we decided to get educated about it. We like the sector, and thought the sector was a good blend of hospitality and residential. That’s why we liked it.”
But if that makes it sound like Quadrum might be naive about what’s involved in senior housing, Schumer is quick to allay that fear. He points to Colin Marshall, who has 20 years of senior living experience and is teaming up with Quadrum to head its new operating company. Marshall’s resume includes stints at HCR ManorCare, Harbor Memory Care and other providers in southwest Florida.
“We’re very excited to be coming into this space, and we’re going to be very deliberate about what we do,” says Marshall. “We understand how important it is to really bring a quality product to the market. We take the responsibility of caring for individuals very seriously. It’s a privilege. In that regard, as we assemble this team, we’re going to make sure the team is competent and brings all of the quality to the brand we expect to establish with this community.”
By bringing on Marshall and starting Quadrum Senior Living Management, the company is signaling that it recognizes senior housing is not all about real estate—which according to experts is a pitfall for some new developers in the sector.
If this bodes well for Quadrum’s success, what might the brand ultimately be known for and how quickly will it grow?
Drawing on its hospitality background, Quadrum aims to make its first project a high-end, resort-style community that is rich in amenities. It will be situated on a 32.5-acre site that Quadrum acquired in an all-cash purchase for the price of $10.74 million; it sits adjacent to Lakes Regional Park, a 279-acre park. Currently, the company does not know how many square feet it will build, but features could include a movie theater, walking paths through a wooded preserve, massage rooms and restaurant-style dining. But health care aspects will be included as well, and the site is situated within a five-minute drive from from two of the state’s most modern and largest hospitals, Healthpark and Gulf Coast Medical Centers, with a dozen more medical offices nearby.
“The property is currently zoned to include 100,000 square feet of retail commercial office space,” says Schumer. “We are talking with hospitals and universities for a use that has a good synergy with the senior living facility.”
While full plans for the site are still developing, the property is approved for up to 460 units. At this time, Quadrum expects to create a mixed housing project with 335 rental units over 264,070 square feet. This will likely include 160 assisted living apartments, 125 independent living apartments and 50 independent living cottages. An estimated 590 surface parking spaces will cover an additional 88,000 square feet.
The company plans to break ground within six to nine months. The anticipated timeline for the development of the community is slated for two years after breaking ground, says Schumer.
As for a pipeline of future properties, Schumer acknowledges the early stage Quadrum is at, but also is frank about the company’s hopes and expectations.
“This is the first property and we are looking to build a brand,” he says. “We do hope that it is scaleable. But, at this point, right now we don’t have any other properties identified and we’re really trying to put together a team here. We want to grow before we start looking at the next one.”
Written by Amy Baxter