Waterlands VivaNeo and The Fertility Partnership Merge

Cate­gory: Private Equity
11. July 2019

Hamburg/Frankfurt/Stockholm/Oxford — Viva­Neo, a group of ferti­lity centers in the port­fo­lio of Water­land Private Equity (“Water­land”), and The Ferti­lity Part­ner­ship, a corpo­rate invest­ment of inves­tor Impilo, are joining forces.

Water­land had acqui­red the Kinder­wunsch­zen­trum Wies­ba­den in 2011 — the start­ing point for the deve­lo­p­ment of Viva­Neo. To date, Viva­Neo has deve­lo­ped into one of Europe’s leading groups of ferti­lity centers with 15 loca­ti­ons in Germany, Denmark, Austria and the Nether­lands. Viva­Neo curr­ently gene­ra­tes annual sales of around 50 million euros. As part of the tran­sac­tion, Water­land will sell its Viva­Neo shares to The Ferti­lity Part­ner­ship. Further finan­cial details of the tran­sac­tion were not disclosed.

Viva­Neo employs around 300 people in its Europe-wide network of clinics. The group is led by a team of experts with commer­cial and medi­cal back­grounds, as well as expe­ri­en­ced physi­ci­ans and renow­ned embryo­lo­gists. Every year, around 25,000 pati­ents make use of the Group’s broad port­fo­lio of services. VivaNeo’s services are based on labo­ra­tory diagno­stics, the use of the latest tech­no­lo­gies and perso­na­li­zed advice on all facets of repro­duc­tive medi­cine. A syste­ma­tic exch­ange of know­ledge between the indi­vi­dual clinics crea­tes the basis for the broad range of services and their conti­nuous further development.

With the acqui­si­tion of the Wies­ba­den ferti­lity center in 2011 and its rebran­ding as Viva­Neo, Water­land laun­ched its buy & build program from this plat­form. Still in 2011, Viva­Neo expan­ded with the acqui­si­tion of a branch office in Berlin. In 2012, further German subsi­dia­ries were added, as well as a sperm bank and a labo­ra­tory diagno­stics center. The inte­gra­tion of Medisch Centrum Kinder­wens in the Nether­lands also marked the first step towards inter­na­tio­na­liza­tion in 2012. Acqui­si­ti­ons in Denmark and Austria follo­wed in 2015 and 2017. They shape the current profile of Viva­Neo: 15 loca­ti­ons in Germany, the Nether­lands, Denmark and Austria. Throug­hout Waterland’s invest­ment period, Viva­Neo has successfully comple­ted a total of 12 acqui­si­ti­ons, massi­vely incre­asing its market share and selec­tively expan­ding its regio­nal presence.

“Since the start of our buy & build stra­tegy at Viva­Neo in 2011, we have accom­pa­nied nume­rous acqui­si­ti­ons at Viva­Neo. Their successful inte­gra­tion crea­ted a multi­na­tio­nal group of ferti­lity centers in the Central Euro­pean market. During Waterland’s invol­vement, Viva­Neo was able to achieve important mile­sto­nes in the deve­lo­p­ment of repro­duc­tive medi­cine and signi­fi­cantly improve stan­dards of pati­ent care in the field of infer­ti­lity treat­ment and arti­fi­cial inse­mi­na­tion,” says Dr. Cars­ten Rahlfs, Mana­ging Part­ner at Water­land Private Equity. “We are plea­sed to announce the merger of Viva­Neo and The Ferti­lity Part­ner­ship. This will create a leading Euro­pean group. The new group aims to invest even more in services and medi­cal treat­ment quality. In total, the group will have 19 IVF clinics in six Euro­pean countries.”

“Through a targe­ted growth stra­tegy, we have been able to signi­fi­cantly expand VivaNeo’s regio­nal foot­print and successfully drive the Group’s expan­sion in a focu­sed manner. We thank Water­land for its part­ner­ship support throug­hout the invest­ment period. Toge­ther with The Ferti­lity Group and Impilo, we are now looking forward to ente­ring the next growth phase,” says Sebas­tian Ahrens, CEO of VivaNeo.

“The Ferti­lity Part­ner­ship is alre­ady a market leader in the UK and Poland in the areas of IVF as well as ultra­sound exami­na­ti­ons. Thanks to VivaNeo’s strong Central Euro­pean presence, we are now the number one IVF provi­der in Nort­hern Europe. Toge­ther, we now want to build a pan-Euro­­pean group to share exper­tise, expe­ri­ence and exis­ting know­ledge in the IVF field,” adds Andrew Came, CEO of The Ferti­lity Partnership.

Inde­pen­dent invest­ment firm Water­land Private Equity has exten­sive expe­ri­ence in the health­care sector. Part of the Water­land port­fo­lio in Germany are, for exam­ple, ATOS, a group of soma­tic acute-care hospi­tals specia­li­zing in cutting-edge ortho­pe­dic medi­cine, and the care service provi­der Schö­nes Leben Group, a service plat­form for outpa­ti­ent, inpa­ti­ent and open geria­tric care as well as mobile services, assis­ted living and leisure acti­vi­ties. Water­land has been active in this sector in Germany since 2011 through the estab­lish­ment of MEDIAN, the current market leader in reha­bi­li­ta­tion medicine.

Advi­sors Water­land: Quar­ton Inter­na­tio­nal AG (M&A) and Will­kie Farr & Gallag­her (Legal)

About Viva­Neo
Viva­Neo is a leading provi­der of infer­ti­lity treat­ments in Europe with loca­ti­ons in Austria, Denmark, Germany and the Nether­lands. The Group opera­tes a total of nine specia­list clinics for arti­fi­cial inse­mi­na­tion in these four count­ries, as well as a sperm bank, a labo­ra­tory for blood diagno­stics and its own dialy­sis clinic. In the count­ries where Viva­Neo is active, Viva­Neo is either the market leader or in second place in the market compa­ri­son. Viva­Neo places the utmost importance on first-class pati­ent care and medi­cal treat­ment success.

About The Ferti­lity Partnership
The Ferti­lity Part­ner­ship, with loca­ti­ons in the UK and Poland, is a leading Euro­pean provi­der of arti­fi­cial inse­mi­na­tion, ultra­sound exami­na­ti­ons for pregnant women and hormone treat­ments. In addi­tion to eight IVF clinics in the UK and 27 addi­tio­nal sites and two IVF clinics in Poland, TFP also opera­tes 88 ultra­sound clinics in the UK and an incre­asing number of hormone treat­ment centers. Foun­ded in 2012 through the merger of two IVF clinics, TFP has since grown through targe­ted add-on acqui­si­ti­ons, green­field deve­lo­p­ments and expan­sion into adja­cent service sectors. Today, TFP is the largest provi­der of ferti­lity services in the UK, as well as the third largest in Poland, and is the leader in ultra­sound scans in the UK.

About Water­land
Water­land is an inde­pen­dent private equity invest­ment firm that helps compa­nies realize their growth plans. With substan­tial finan­cial support and indus­try exper­tise, Water­land enables its port­fo­lio compa­nies to achieve acce­le­ra­ted growth both orga­ni­cally and through acqui­si­ti­ons. Water­land has offices in the Nether­lands (Bussum), Belgium (Antwerp), Germany (Hamburg, Munich), Poland (Warsaw), the UK (Manches­ter), Denmark (Copen­ha­gen) and Switz­er­land (Zurich). Curr­ently, six billion euros in equity funds are under management.

Water­land has consis­t­ently outper­for­med its invest­ments since its foun­ding in 1999 and has regu­larly ranked among the top three leading private equity firms world­wide in past HEC/Dow Jones Private Equity Perfor­mance Rankings.

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