Largest US home health provider Gentiva to buy Harden Healthcare

Gentiva Health Services Inc, the largest provider of home health care in the US, today said that it would buy the home health, hospice and community care businesses of privately held Harden Healthcare Services, for about $409 million.

Under the terms of the deal, Gentiva will acquire Harden's home health, hospice and community care businesses, while Harden's existing shareholders will retain the company's long-term care business.

Gentiva will pay approximately $408.8 million, consisting of $355 million in cash and approximately $53.8 million in Gentiva common stock. 

Gentiva said that it expects to fund the cash portion of the purchase price through available cash and a new credit facility.

Founded in 2001 and based in Texas, Harden operates in 13 states and has a large presence in Texas and several other south central states.  Excluding its long-term care business, Harden's 2012 consolidated revenue was approximately $476 million. 

Based on results from continuing operations for the respective companies' 2012 fiscal years, Gentiva anticipates the merger will create a company with revenue comprised of 49 per cent home health revenue, 41 per cent hospice revenue and 10 per cent community care revenue. 

As part of the transaction, Gentiva will become a preferred provider for Harden's 49 skilled nursing and assisted living facilities in Texas.

"This transaction is a great strategic fit for Gentiva and we believe it will provide significant long-term value for our shareholders," said Gentiva executive chairman, Rod Windley.

"I consider the Harden transaction a milestone in the continued Gentiva growth story.  The increasing healthcare needs of an aging population and ongoing rate pressures will fuel industry consolidation and Gentiva is positioned to be a leader in this effort," he added.

Atlanta-based Gentiva is the country's largest provider of home health and hospice services based on revenue.

It provides home health and hospice services to more than 350,000 patients every year from more than 420 locations.