Betting on home care for seniors, InTandem backs HouseWorks

Home is the lowest-cost care setting and the one patients prefer, explained InTandem's Brad Coppens.

Later this morning, InTandem Capital Partners expects to announce a majority investment in HouseWorks, a Woburn, Massachusetts-based provider of home-based healthcare services for seniors founded in 1999.

This is not the first outside or institutional capital invested in the company, as RAB Ventures invested in HouseWorks in 2018.

“Homecare services have long been known as the lowest-cost care setting within broad post-acute spectrum and the care setting most closely aligned with patient preference,” Brad Coppens, senior managing director, InTandem, explained in an exclusive interview with PE Hub. “Among other drivers, those factors drive a long-term tailwind for the sector,” he said. Covid accelerated the growing popularity of home-based care.

“Partnering with exceptional management is a hallmark of every investment that we make, and here we are backing Mike Trigilio and the rest of his team as much as we are investing in HouseWorks,” explained InTandem’s Coppens, referring to the CEO of HouseWorks.

Trigilio is a long-time executive in home-based healthcare. Prior to HouseWorks, he served as CEO of Associated Home Care and presided over its sale of AHC to Amedisys in 2016. He served as president of the personal care division of Amedisys until 2020.

“From our standpoint, delivering great patient care and great attention and support for caregivers is table stakes in home-based care,” Coppens said. “Mike and team not only meet that bar, but also dramatically surpass it. We see HouseWorks as truly best-in-class as it relates to both patient and caregiver experience, which in this market is dually important.”

HouseWorks’ approach stands out from the competition, Coppens said. HouseWorks leverages technology in its mission to guide caregivers to help seniors “stay safe, comfortable and engaged in their lives,” as the company puts it.

“HouseWorks has been able to deliver homecare in a differentiated way through technology enablement,” Coppens said. “Whether that is patient care, scheduling, caregiver interaction and administration, and the ease through which caregivers can access patients through the HouseWorks system, HouseWorks is focused on delivering a unique experience.”

Covid accelerated the use of home-based care.

Medicaid is going to be a key driver of growth.

Brad Coppens, InTandem Capital

“The continued rebalancing of funding away from institutional care settings within the Medicaid arena is a trend that’s been occurring since the mid-90s and continues today,” said Coppens. “Personal care services are associated with the longest average length of stay, as well as a dramatic cost savings relative to available alternatives. While our patients may not currently drive extraordinary costs within the system, every patient we touch is assessed at a skilled nursing level of care need, and has the immediate potential to become very expensive, so to speak.”

He added that patients are just one fall or slip away from becoming a patient with “extraordinarily expensive care needs.”

“Personal care services deliver a very cost-effective way to keep fragile, yet stable, patients living comfortably in their own homes. The unsung value in this industry is exactly that, and why we like the business so much.”

Moving the company forward, Trigilio is focused on organic growth.

“We drive organic growth from our recruitment and caregiver retention focus,” Trigilio told PE Hub. “Since the early 90s, that’s a complete reversal of the way homecare businesses have operated. By focusing on the workforce and supply side, it enables us to organically grow in areas that we are specifically targeting. An example of that is our expansion into the Medicaid realm in 2022. Our technology is creating workstreams for onboarding, care delivery, and patient/client quality metrics, all of which we believe are driving organic growth and what differentiates our personal care today. We’re trying to define what quality care is in the home.”

The inorganic growth strategy will include geographic expansion. The company currently has eight locations throughout Massachusetts, the Southern New Hampshire and Maine regions and the Greater Philadelphia area.

Said Coppens: “We absolutely have an ambition to build a multi-regional homecare business.”

To learn more about InTandem’s investment strategy, read PE Hub’s profile of the firm’s healthcare investment approach here.