St. Croix Hospice now has a new owner. The Oakdale, Minnesota-based hospice provider was sold by The Vistria Group to fellow private equity firm H.I.G Capital. According to sources cited in PE Hub, the deal was valued at $580 million. St. Croix Hospice is a leading provider of hospice care across the midwestern United States, serving an area that covers six contiguous states.
The Vistria Group and St. Croix Hospice partnership started in October 2017 after the private equity firm purchased a majority stake in St. Croix from Clearview Capital Fund III, LP. Vistria and St. Croix’s first acquisition came in 2019 when they purchased Hometown Hospice & Homecare in Brookfield, Wisconsin for an undisclosed sum. And then in February 2020, St. Croix added Serenity Care Hospice in Harrisonville, Missouri, expanding its midwestern footprint. Serenity Care Hospice supports patients and families in Cass, Jackson, Henry, Bates and Johnson counties.
The acquisition of St. Croix Hospice also doesn’t come as much of a surprise. There were reports over the summer that Vistria was mulling a sale, working with Houlihan Lokey Inc. on the transaction. Additionally, the hospice M&A market has been extremely active in 2020, providing a big boost to the deal volume in the Home Health & Hospice market overall. According to search results in the HealthCareMandA.com Deal Database, 43% of HH&H transactions were for standalone hospice providers, with 50% of those deals committed by a private equity firm or one of their portfolio companies.
Earlier in October, a joint venture between LHC Group (NASDAQ: LHCG) and Christus Health purchased Santa Rosa Hospice, a hospice provider in the San Marcos metro area of Texas, which includes the Austin market, for an undisclosed sum. Although the market has been in flux throughout the year, it seems the hospice market has remained attractive nonetheless.