Ronald Orol at The Street says activist investor Sandell Asset Management appears to hold a strong hand in its dealings with Brookdale Senior Living, which it wants to spin off its real estate. The New York-based investment firm, Orol writes, plans to add to its board presence next spring to try to force such a transaction unless Brookdale's directors act before then. And the pieces are in place for such action — as are two deep-pocketed potential buyers.
For HCP and Ventas, an acquisition of Brookdale or its assets would prevent the formation of a new rival. Any move by Brookdale to spin off its massive real estate holdings into a free-standing REIT would create new competition for HCP and Ventas in the health care REIT industry, people familiar with Sandell argue.
Goldman Sachs analyst Brian Zimmerman has begun covering shares of Brookdale Senior Living with a 'buy' rating. He sees the stock, which closed at $36.87 (Ticker: BKD) and is flat year to date, climbing to $45 in the coming year. Among the seven analysts tracking the Brentwood-based company, the median price target is $44.
A real estate branch of Prudential Financial has acquired two Tennessee assisted living communities and one in Connecticut for $110 million.
Through the deal, Prudential Real Estate Investors acquires The Hearth at Hendersonville and The Hearth at Franklin, which have 130 and 126 units, respectively.
"We are pleased to add the Hearth Portfolio, a high-quality senior housing portfolio with strong income potential, as the first investment for our SHP V portfolio," Noah Levy, head of PREI's Senior Housing business. "We look forward to partnering with Hearth Management, who are proven senior hosting operators, to deliver attractive risk-adjusted returns for SHP V investors.
Hearth Management previously owned the properties through a joint venture and will remain as property manager.
The board of National HealthCare Corp. has voted to boost the nursing home operator's quarterly dividend to 40 cents per common share. That's up almost 18 percent from last quarter and will lift the yield of NHC (Ticker: NHC) above 2.5 percent. Word of the hike came shortly after NHC executives reported first-quarter profits that were flat versus a year earlier. The new dividend will be paid Sept. 1 to shareholders of record on June 30.
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