Prolink: Connecting Health and Senior Care Professionals
Ten years ago, two friends, Anne Miller and Cheryl Brooks, sought to earn extra money to fund their children’s college education. Their idea was to help seniors with chores around the house and provide companionship, assistance running errands and help with daily living activities, like bathing and dressing. With no formal business strategy or plans for aggressive growth, the duo found themselves leading a million-dollar business several years after starting the venture. In early December of 2017, with all their children through college, they sold their business.
Millbrook HomeCare Partners, based in Hellertown, was purchased by industry veteran Terry Weber. Weber has over 30 years’ experience caring for seniors in nursing home, senior living and home care settings. “I’ve had the opportunity to manage a local office of a home care company in the past, but I always wanted to own my own home care agency,” says Weber. Millbrook home care provides non-medical home care services to residents across the Lehigh Valley and is a well-respected name in the industry.
Weber was presented the opportunity to buy the agency through Jeff Tintle, Jr., who facilitated the transaction. “Terry will do a great job leading Millbrook toward future growth,” says Tintle. “The same demographics that helped Anne and Cheryl start their business will carry Terry into the future. Her experience, energy and work ethic will ensure her success.” Weber was identified by the previous owners as an ideal buyer because they wanted their business to remain independently owned and operated. “There was a lot of interest from all corners of senior care to buy the company -- from nonprofits, to corporations, private equity and even competing franchises,” reveals Tintle.
Tintle’s firm, Thrive, LLC performs annual surveys, benchmark reports and consulting within the home care industry in eastern Pennsylvania. Their research shows that there are over 80 non-medical home care agencies operating in the Lehigh Valley. The growth in the aging population has fueled demand for services and proliferated agencies. Tintle says, “Since we started tracking the home care industry locally four years ago, the net growth of agencies in the market is approximately 10 percent. The hourly cost for service has risen approximately $2.50 per hour to an average cost of $21.89 per hour for companion care. Additionally, other revenue metrics are up, including average number of clients per agency and average weekly billable hours per client. The home care industry is literally booming as they seek to cater to the leading band of baby boomers.” The Bureau of Labor and Statistics also places the job of home health aide is the third fastest growing occupation.
Despite the level of local competition, the consensus among home care agencies is that there is plenty of business out there. “Existing agencies that are well run should continue to grow. New players will also enter the market to meet demand, and there will inevitably be more mergers and acquisitions in 2018.”
For more information about the home care industry or for information to buy or sell a home care agency, call Thrive at 855-233-7034.
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