Posted on: 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 Unifeye Vision Partners (“UVP”), 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 UVP. 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.”