Autism treatment companies are still hot targets in 2019. Eight transactions have been announced so far this year, compared with 20 in all of 2018. (That was an outsized year for every healthcare sector. There were nine deals for autism targets in 2017.)
Private equity firms are trading platforms in this sub-sector. Just this year, Gryphon Investors bought Learn Behavioral from LLR Partners for an undisclosed amount. Now there’s the deal between Baird Capital and Arsenal Capital Partners for Hopebridge LLC.
Hopebridge LLC was launched in 2005 in Indianapolis, Indiana to serve the growing need for autism treatment services. The clinic-based autism therapy business provides Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), occupational therapy, physical therapy and speech therapy to children on the autism spectrum.
By the time Baird Capital acquired it in November 2017, it had grown to operate 14 clinics across Indiana, Kentucky and Ohio.
Now, Baird is selling a majority stake in the company to Arsenal Capital Partners for an undisclosed amount. With locations in now in Georgia, as well as Indiana, Kentucky and Ohio, Hopebridge expects to operate 41 centers by June 2019. Baird will retain a minority stake in the company.