Chicago-based Waud Capital Partners, a lower mid-market private equity firm, has made an undisclosed investment in Minnesota Eye Consultants, a clinical eye care services provider. As a result of the transaction, Waud has launched United Vision Company, a holding company that will back MEC’s expansion in the Minnesota market; however, MEC will operate as Minnesota Eye Consultants in its existing markets.
Chicago, IL, February 7, 2017 – Waud Capital Partners (“Waud Capital” or “WCP”), a leading growth-oriented lower middle-market private equity firm, has announced a strategic partnership with Minnesota Eye Consultants (“MEC” or the “Group”), one of the premier providers of clinical eye care services in the United States. In connection with the partnership, Waud Capital has formed United Vision Partners (“United Vision”), a holding company to support MEC’s continued expansion in the Minnesota market and to complete future partnerships with leading providers of eye care in other geographies.
Founded in 1989 by Dr. Richard Lindstrom, MEC provides surgical and non-surgical eye care services through a network of six offices, including four which operate ophthalmology-focused ambulatory surgery centers. The Group offers comprehensive eye care services, including treatment for cataracts, corneal disease, refractive surgery, glaucoma, oculoplastics and medical optometry. Through its team of 25 ophthalmologists and optometrists, MEC has established a national reputation with a distinguished fellowship program and dedication to clinical research and education.
“After establishing and building a tremendous organization over the last 25 years, we chose to partner with Waud Capital following an extremely selective process,” noted Dr. Richard Lindstrom, Founder of Minnesota Eye Consultants. “The team at Waud Capital shares our commitment to clinical excellence, and we believe their experience successfully supporting leading physician practices is truly unique. This partnership provides us the operating resources and growth capital to continue our commitment to excellence in an evolving healthcare market, in addition to positioning our business for rapid growth and differentiation.”
As part of the transaction, all of MEC’s physician shareholders will maintain their current roles with the Group and retain ownership through United Vision. MEC will continue operating as ‘Minnesota Eye Consultants’ in its existing markets.
“Our partnership with MEC is the result of carefully studying the vision market over the last three years and identifying the leading providers of care across the U.S,” said Chris Graber, Principal with Waud Capital. “Early in our efforts, it became clear that Minnesota Eye Consultants was one of the industry’s leaders, with a national reputation for quality of care. We’re thrilled to partner with Dr. Lindstrom and the team at MEC and believe that their commitment to clinical leadership and patient experience provide an extraordinary foundation for growth.”
David Neighbours, Partner at Waud Capital, added, “Our partnership with Minnesota Eye Consultants exemplifies WCP’s disciplined approach to identifying differentiated organizations in targeted sectors and partnering with industry leaders in large, fragmented markets. This is our first investment out of WCP’s fourth institutional fund and the investment marks our continued dedication to supporting promising physician practices in the ambulatory care market.”
About Minnesota Eye Consultants
Founded in 1989, Minnesota Eye Consultants provides comprehensive eye care services through a team of 25 ophthalmologists and optometrists. The organization provides clinical services through a network of six offices in Minnesota, including four dedicated ophthalmology-focused surgery centers. Minnesota Eye Consultants has established a national reputation for clinical excellence through its distinguished fellowship program and its commitment to clinical research and education. Minnesota Eye Consultants represents United Vision’s first partnership. More information can be found by visiting the company’s website at www.mneye.com.
About Waud Capital Partners
Based in Chicago, Waud Capital is a leading private equity firm founded in 1993 that partners with exceptional management teams to acquire or create platforms in the U.S. lower middle market through control-oriented growth equity investments, industry consolidation, buyouts or recapitalizations. WCP seeks to invest $50 million to $100 million (including follow-on investments) of total equity in each platform company and employs a disciplined three-phase investment strategy with staged investments designed to generate superior risk-adjusted returns. Waud Capital targets services businesses in large, growing, fragmented markets within two industries: healthcare services and business and technology services. Typically, the initial platform companies in which Waud Capital invests have enterprise values between $50 million and $250 million. WCP has approximately $2.1 billion in assets under management. Since its founding, Waud Capital has successfully completed more than 200 investments, including platform companies and follow-on opportunities.
For additional information on WCP, visit the firm’s website at www.waudcapital.com.