Medical group deals up 121% last quarter: 4 details

The medical group transactions market heated up at the end of last year, more than doubling the number of fourth quarter deals from the previous year.

Levin Associates, a market intelligence firm, compiles medical group transactions on a quarterly basis.

1. There were 137 medical group transactions in the fourth quarter of 2021, up 43 percent from the third quarter and 121 percent over the fourth quarter of 2020.

2. Buyers spent more than $2.9 billion on medical groups last quarter, driven by Tenet's $1.2 billion acquisition of SurgCenter Development to bring more than 90 ASCs into its portfolio. Most transaction values were not publicly disclosed.

3. The most active sector for deals was ophthalmology and optometry, with more than 29 deals inked in the quarter. The acquisitions continued into the new year, with nine deals announced within the first week of 2022.

4. Private equity backed many of the fourth quarter deals to expand their reach in orthopedics, ophthalmology and gastroenterology. Notably, Atlanta-based Resurgens Orthopaedics received private equity investment from Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe in December.

"Private equity firms remain the driving force in the market, building regional and national platforms, but health systems are making significant moves to maintain their presence," said Dylan Sammut, editor of healthcare at Irving Levin Associates. "The competition from these two groups of buyers will keep activity high throughout 2022."

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