After extensive negotiations, Australia’s largest for-profit aged care provider has decided to acquire 25 per cent of Victorian operator, Blue Cross.

Principal Healthcare Group (PHG), which is owned by funds managed by AMP Capital, has confirmed that it made a significant cash investment in Blue Cross, although it declined to disclose the amount.

PHG owns 9 per cent of the for-profit aged care sector and about 3 per cent of the total Australian industry.

The four current members of Blue Cross’s board will continue in their existing role and a fifth non-executive director will join the board from AMP Capital.

“We are pleased to have such a robust and experienced partner moving forward supporting [our] growth,” said Blue Cross’s Chairman, David Eccles.

The deal will help drive Blue Cross’s continuing managed growth strategy. Since 2006, the organisation has increased its aged residential care portfolio from 10 facilities to 20. The group also has 1,000 community care clients.

It now plans to develop three new facilities and carry out major re-developments at two existing sites.

AMP Capital’s head of Australian infrastructure, Dr Greg Roder said he looked forward to working with Blue Cross to achieve its goals.

“Blue Cross is an appealing investment because of its experienced and dedicated staff and management team, its concentration of aged care facilities in well established Melbourne suburbs, high occupancy and its high quality care and systems that underpin its accreditation,” said Dr Roder.

Earlier this year, PHG acquired 100 per cent of Queensland-based for-profit provider, Domain Aged Care from MFS Limited.

The company already owns and operates 13 facilities in Victoria and it said they will continue to operate independently of Blue Cross.

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