BEI management contemplates joining others to run chain

Share this content:

The management of BEI may consider combining forces with another company to control the nursing home chain, the CEO of the Fort Smith-based company said Thursday.

"As the board is committed to exploring the broadest range of options possible, it is certainly possible that some potential buyers may be interested in working with management," said William Floyd during the company's annual meeting.  "However, this is only one of the many options that might arise."

Floyd reiterated that there has been a "robust level of interest in our company" since BEI, formerly Beverly Enterprises Inc., announced in March it would auction itself. The dramatic step was forced by a takeover attempt by Formation Capital, an investment consortium of Alpharetta, GA. More bidders could emerge, he said, without naming current bidders.

Formation Capital, which includes Formation Capital LLC, Appaloosa Management LP and Franklin Mutual Advisers LLC, recently became a bidder after it agreed to back off from its fight to elect its own board of directors. The company notified BEI in January it was offering to buy the chain for about $1.5 billion, but BEI rebuffed the offer.