29 Former Atrium Communities Sold Out of Receivership

In September 2018, 33 properties operated by Little Falls, New Jersey-based Atrium Health and Senior Living went into receivership. Following recent transactions, those properties have now all been either closed or sold.

North Shore Health Care — based in the Milwaukee suburb of Glendale, Wisconsin — has acquired 22 of the communities. Of these, 16 are post-acute care centers and six are assisted living communities. They are all located in Wisconsin except for a single site in Michigan. This deal was first announced about a month ago and now has officially closed, according to a Dec. 1 announcement.

Financial terms were not disclosed. Michael Polsky of Milwaukee-based law firm Beck, Chaet, Bamberger & Polsky served as the receiver of the Atrium portfolio, with Health Dimensions Group of Minneapolis serving as the operating consultant.

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North Shore launched in 2015 with two communities and, prior to the Atrium deal, had grown to 44 skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) and five assisted living communities across Wisconsin, Minnesota and North Dakota.

Some of these former Atrium buildings align with North Shore’s existing footprint, and the company intends to create clusters of complementary services such as dementia and mental health care, cardiac care and orthopedic care, North Shore CEO David Mills told Skilled Nursing News last month.

In a separate transaction, Senior Living Investment Brokerage (SLIB) Managing Directors Jason Punzel and Ryan Saul were the sole brokers in the sale of four former Atrium SNFs and three assisted living communities in the Wisconsin towns of Chetek, Black River Falls, Bloomer and Oconto Falls.

The buyer is a regional based owner/operator headquartered in Illinois with other communities in Wisconsin and the Midwest. The new owner plans to focus on building census by incentivizing local leadership and capital expenditures to increase occupancy, according to an SLIB press release.

The other four Atrium buildings that were in receivership closed last winter.

At the time it entered receivership, Atrium owed debtors more than $13.5 million, according to local news reports. Nine Atrium SNFs and three assisted living communities, all located in New Jersey, were not included as part of the receivership.

A rash of receiverships and bankruptcies hit the skilled nursing sector hard in the last several years, due in part to industry headwinds such as changing reimbursement structures and a severe labor crunch. High-profile receiverships have included Skyline, Dycora and Fortis; North Shore gained much of its scale by taking over Fortis properties. Facing its own operating challenges, private-pay senior living has not been immune to Chapter 11 and receivership situations, either.

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