2H 2019 Deal Hound – Pet M&A Report
In the pet product and services industry, an identifiable shift in how people see and treat their pets drove an emerging wave of veterinary hospital acquisitions and regional rollups in 2H 2019 as the industry consolidates. A wave of young adults in their 20s are having children later in life – if at all – opting instead for pets, which become true members of a family. This “humanization of pets” is fueling demand for veterinary hospitals that provide a holistic approach, offering everything from routine checkups to advice on, and access to, affiliated high-end products including organic or specialty pet foods, vitamins and wellness supplements, prescription medication, etc.
IN DOGGONE BOOMING: SHORE CAPITAL PARTNERS
Chicago-based Shore Capital Partners is a case in point: after working with two emerging veterinary hospital groups to establish Detroit-based Mission Veterinary Partners in 2017, Shore has been on a tear, building Mission from 22 hospitals to more than 50 in less than two years. In the second half of 2019 alone, Mission added five veterinary hospitals across the Midwest, a unit growth rate of more than 10 percent in less than six months.
But that’s not all Shore has been up to in the space. Since it began working with another regional group, Southern Veterinary Partners, in 2014, Shore has continued to grow the Birmingham, Alabama based veterinary hospital chain, adding eight practices in the second half of 2019. Southern currently boasts 112 veterinary practices, serving more than 1 million pet patients a year. In 2019, Inc. magazine named Southern one of the country’s fastest growing privately held companies, earning the highest growth ranking of any veterinary company…