June 10th, 2019 | Company News
Legend Senior Living® is proud to announce the acquisition of Brookdale Hutchinson, which offers independent living, assisted living, and memory care. It will become the eighth Legend community in Kansas for the Wichita-based company. The community is located at 2416 Brentwood and its new name will be Legend of Hutchinson.
This complements Legend’s current portfolio of communities and makes sense geographically because of its established operational presence in the state. Welltower Inc (NYSE: WELL) owns the real estate, which Brookdale leases. Welltower has a long-standing relationship with both Brookdale and Legend dating back more than 25 years and presented the opportunity to transition operations. Legend will be the new lessee in an NNN lease structure.
Acquiring a new community involves getting to know the personalities involved. “It’s exciting because you meet some really great people through the process,” said Matt Buchanan, Executive Vice President of Legend Senior Living. “A great acquisition opportunity doesn’t present itself without being operated by great people. We recognize that dynamic and recognize we’re coming into a well-operated business.”
“The first priority in any acquisition is continuity of operations,” Buchanan explained. “What tools do the staff need day one to continue providing care to residents? Solve that first, then everything else will happen in due course. The key is communication and offering peace of mind to residents’ families and associates. IT infrastructure, software systems, payroll, vendor service agreements, utilities transfer, staff training, onboarding, records transfer; it all has to happen in a very short amount of time.”
When it comes to adding a community through acquisition, everything is different when compared to going through the process of developing it from the ground up. Legend has extensive experience and success at both. “I think it comes down to one thing: time,” Buchanan said. “In a start-up, we have a year or more to plan for operations. In an acquisition, the team usually has four to eight weeks to plan and prepare. It’s a lot of moving pieces that have to come together all at once to produce a smooth transition.”
This is a period of exceptional growth for Legend, which has broken ground for two communities and opened five more in Texas, Florida, Pennsylvania, and Colorado in 18 months. The last acquisition was in 2017, when it acquired two Pennsylvania communities in Lancaster and Lititz.
“Our recent growth speaks to the reality that we are fulfilling our mission to serve seniors,” Buchanan said. “We’ll continue to grow as a company, which allows us to leverage best practices in service delivery, increase talent, further train and advance our associates, and deliver on our commitment to the customer.”
“As a privately held family business, Legend lives by the same principles of servanthood, compassion, and character, guided by faith upon which it was founded,” Buchanan said. Although it operates 41 communities in six states, Legend remains a family experience and a family business with two generations of Buchanans leading the company and guiding its future. Tim Buchanan, Matt’s father, is the founder and Chief Executive Officer.
Legend encourages independence and dignity to all residents and assists them maintain their independence longer in a welcoming environment. Because it’s essential that they can have a family relationship without having to rely on their loved ones for the care or assistance they need, Legend assists with care so the families can have a strong relationship and continue to make memories. Being involved and engaged means residents socialize more because they’re surrounded by opportunities and peers, and can make new friends and memories in the later years of their lives.