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Emeritus, Blackstone Seal $1.2 Billion Deal to Buy Sunwest Communities

Seniors housing giant Emeritus Corp. (NYSE:ESC), has finalized the purchase of scores of communities formerly operated by Sunwest Management.

A joint venture between affiliates of Emeritus, Blackstone Real Estate Advisors, an affiliate of The Blackstone Group, and Columbia Pacific Advisors, completed the transaction Aug. 5.

The joint venture has acquired 144 communities formerly operated by affiliates of Sunwest Management, based in Salem, Ore., for approximately $1.2 billion.

Emeritus, a national provider of assisted living and Alzheimer’s, and related dementia care services, funded about $19 million as its equity contribution at closing, representing an approximate equity interest of 5.8% in the Joint Venture.

After completion of this transaction, Emeritus operates 460 communities in 44 states with a capacity of over 39,000 units and a resident capacity of over 45,000.

The Sunwest transaction adds 9,200 residents and 5,900 employees to the Seattle-based Emeritus portfolio, says Daniel Baty, chairman and co-CEO. “The joint venture will contribute to our growth over the next several years and should provide a significant return for the company over time,”

Of the 144 properties sold, 132 closed on Aug. 5, and 12 had been deferred. Emeritus began managing all but one last week. The 144 communities include some 11,769 units. Revenues for the total portfolio are about $346.8 million, and average occupancy is 79%.

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