Blockbuster merger will bring Brookdale, Emeritus together, create largest senior living company

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CEO T. Andrew Smith
CEO T. Andrew Smith

Brookdale Senior Living and Emeritus Senior Living will merge through a $2.8 billion deal, in a move that Brookdale CEO T. Andrew Smith said will be "transformative for the industry." 

Under the definitive merger agreement, Emeritus shareholders will receive 0.95 shares of Brookdale common stock for each of their Emeritus shares, the companies announced Thursday.

The expanded Brookdale will consist of more than 1,100 communities in 46 states, making it the nation's largest senior living company, executives said during a conference call. The Nashville-based company says the merger will make it the nation's first “single-branded provider” offering “fully integrated ancillary services across the continuum of care.”

“In an industry with very attractive long-term growth dynamics, this strategic merger creates the first national, predominantly private-pay based, senior living solutions company,” said Smith.

The deal is aligned with Brookdale's recently launched marketing strategy, which is meant to position the company as the first truly national senior living brand, Smith noted on Thursday's call. 

Emeritus was the subject of a scathing Frontline documentary last year. The report focused on allegations of poor care and legal judgments against the company, and raised questions as to whether assisted living providers are equipped for residents with dementia and other conditions associated with complex needs. 

Brookdale "looked deeply" into these issues and came away satisfied that Emeritus is committed to providing high-quality care, Smith said.

The two providers share a similar “resident-centric” culture, said Granger Cobb, president and CEO of Emeritus.

Smith will serve as CEO after the merger. The deal is expected to close in the third quarter of this year.

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