La Vida Llena parent enters Oklahoma City with acquisition
The parent company of one of Albuquerque's premier retirement communities, La Vida Llena, has purchased an assisted living and memory care center in Oklahoma City.
Haverland Carter LifeStyle Group, a New Mexico-based nonprofit, bought the 124-unit Sommerset Assisted Living and Memory Care Facility, which will be rebranded as Sommerset Neighborhood.
Sommerset operated as a for-profit community, but with the purchase, will turn into a nonprofit entity. The previous owners, Connie Bailey and JD and Ida Dunn, decided to sell the operations to retire.
Haverland officials said the Oklahoma acquisition is part of its growth strategy. This is the company's first community out of state.
“It is within our strategic plan to grow business either by building new or through acquisition," said E. DeAnn Eaton, the CEO of Haverland and La Vida Llena.
David Walbright, Haverland's director of marketing and sales, said the company is looking at other opportunities in nearby states.
"Within the industry we had let it be known that we had management expertise to take on management contracts or acquisitions," Walbright told Business First Thursday.
Walbright said the senior living industry is growing rapidly, and while Haverland wants to grow with it, the company doesn't want to expand too quickly. He said Haverland was presented with numerous opportunities, but passed on those that didn't fit the company's model.
"It's unbelievable how many other opportunities came across our desk. But it has to work into our finances. It also has to allow us to grow without risking our current capital base and properties," Walbright said.
Albuquerque's La Vida Llena opened in 1983 with less than 200 living units and has since expanded to 324 units. The campus, located in the Northeast Heights near Juan Tabo and Montgomery boulevards, also includes a nursing home and assisted living facility.
When the La Vida Llena campus reached its expansion limits, Haverland opted to build a new community, called The Neighborhood in Rio Rancho, which will open in April of 2016. Phase one of The Neighborhood includes 90 independent living units, a 45-bed nursing home, a 45-unit assisted living facility and 24-unit memory care facility, Walbright said. A second phase includes another 90 independent living units.
Walbright said the first phase of living units is already 75 percent pre-reserved. "There's no doubt that there's growth in our industry," Walbright said.
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