Humana buys Kindred to build home health inroads

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Kindred’s Breier: “Business as usual” until the deal closes.
Kindred’s Breier: “Business as usual” until the deal closes.

Kindred Healthcare has not only slid off the skilled nursing radar, it's also been sold — to insurer Humana Inc. and two private equity partners.

The $4.1 billion cash deal is expected to close in the summer of 2018. Kindred announced the transaction Dec. 19. It capped a tumultuous year in which it worked feverishly to sell off the remainder of what was once one of the largest portfolios of nursing homes in the country.

The deal will divide Kindred into two entities, one devoted to home care and the other to speciality hospitals.

Kindred's home health, hospice and community care businesses will spin into a standalone company called Kindred at Home. Ownership will be split 40/60 between Humana and the equity firms TPG Capital and Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe.

The company's long-term acute care hospitals, rehabilitation centers and contract rehabilitation services will operate as a specialty hospital company owned by TPG and WCAS. It will carry the Kindred Healthcare name.

“We expect the flexibility and resources gained through the investments by Humana, TPG and WCAS to create new opportunities for teammates, enhance innovation in both platforms and further our culture of a patients-first approach to high-quality, compassionate care,” wrote Kindred President and CEO Ben Breier in an email to employees.

He said that he would continue in his current role, while current Executive Vice President and President of Kindred at Home David Causby will become CEO of Kindred at Home. Kindred shareholders are to receive $9.00 per share, a 27% premium.

Officials from Ventas, a healthcare real estate investment trust that owns 30 long-term acute care and inpatient rehab facilities run by Kindred, said they supported the deal.