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Moneyline: Mega merger announced, Capital buys Epic Health Services, DME Express raises capital

Moneyline: Mega merger announced, Capital buys Epic Health Services, DME Express raises capital

MUNICH and DANBURY, Conn. - Linde and Praxair announced their intention to merge on Dec. 20, creating a company with revenues of about $30 billion and a current market value of more than $65 billion.

The two companies have been courting each other, on and off, for two years.

Linde, which bought Lincare for $4.6 billion in 2012 and American HomePatient in 2015, is currently the industrial gas industry's No. 2 player, followed by Praxair at No. 3. Air Liquide SA of France leads the industry.

Praxair sold* its U.S. homecare business to Apria Healthcare in 2011.

Shareholders from each company, as well as regulators, still need to approver the merger.

Bain Capital acquires Epic Health Services

DALLAS - Epic Health Services has agreed to be acquired by Bain Capital Private Equity, it announced Dec. 19.

Epic Health Services offers a full continuum of home health services, including private duty nursing, enteral nutrition, medical supplies and behavioral health services for medically fragile children.

“Because of advances in technology and health care delivery, home health care has become a preferred alternative to remaining in a health care facility for children facing difficult health obstacles and their families,” said Chris Roussos, president and CEO of Epic Health Services. “Epic Health Services enables these children to receive high quality care in the comfort of their own homes while supporting their families and helping create an environment of normalcy in the home.”

Epic Health Services has been building a national presence through acquisitions, including the October 2015 buy of Houston-based Medco and the September 2015 buy of Option 1 Healthcare Solutions. The provider, which was founded in 2001, now serves 21 states.

Roussos and the current management team will continue to lead Epic Health Services, which was previously owned by Webster Capital.

Terms of the deal, expected to close in the first quarter of 2017, were not disclosed.

DME Express raises capital for expansion

BATON ROUGE, La. - DME Express, a DME provider to hospice and nursing facilities in the Southeast, has secured an undisclosed amount of growth equity financing from WayPoint Capital Partners, it announced Dec. 19.

Concurrent with the financing, DME Express has also secured a significantly expanded credit facility from its existing lender, Bank of Oklahoma.

Funds will be used to support the company's rapid growth and its continued expansion.

“This capital raise will enable DME Express to continue to make significant new investments in equipment, technology and expansion into new geographic markets,” said Mark Borneleit, CEO of DME Express, in a press release.

DME Express has more than 100,000 square feet of warehouse space across six states, has more than $20 million invested in inventory, and has more than 120 delivery technicians and vehicles, according to the release.

WayPoint Capital Partners, based in Rye, N.Y., has several billion dollars in assets under management in middle market health care, logistics and business services sectors. A so-called “balance sheet investor,” it does not have predefined holding periods or exit horizons, allowing it to focus on long-term capital appreciation, the release says.

“We look forward to pursuing the numerous organic and inorganic growth opportunities available as a regional leader in a fragmented but consolidating industry,” said Philip Edmunds, vice president at WayPoint Capital Partners, in the release.

Gar Wood Securities served as the exclusive financial adviser to DME Express on the transaction.


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