July 22, 2020
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HJ Sims successfully Positions SearStone for Accretive Phase II
FAIRFIELD, CT– HJ Sims (Sims), a privately held investment bank and wealth management firm founded in 1935, is pleased to announce a June 30 closed financing in the amount of $6.6 million for Samaritan Housing, Inc. d/b/a SearStone Retirement Community (SearStone), a life plan community located in Cary, NC. SearStone consists of 131 independent living apartments, 38 independent living estate homes, 14 assisted living units and 25 skilled nursing beds. The assisted living and skilled nursing services are offered at the Brittany Place Healthcare Center (Brittany Place).
Sims financed the first phase of SearStone with a $117.5 million non-rated fixed rate bond issue in June 2012 and an expansion of the Healthcare Center in 2016 with an $8 million issue. Sims provided the original seed capital, and the funds to advance refund the 2012 issue, and provided a portion of the pre-development capital for the Phase II expansion in 2017. Given the growing demand for independent living units, planning commenced for a Phase II expansion project and pre-development costs were funded with $5.5 million of proceeds from the Series 2017B Bonds. Phase II should double the size of SearStone and is projected to be financially accretive; additional pre-development capital was needed. Phase II is known as the Highview at SearStone and contemplates the addition of 152 independent living units, 28 assisted living units (14 specialized memory care units) and 24 skilled nursing suites. New dining venues, along with additional common and green spaces will be also provided.
Sims successfully underwrote $4.6 million of tax-exempt bonds and $2.0 million of taxable bonds to provide supplemental pre-development capital for Phase II, scheduled for financing in early 2022.The financing was completed as one of the first non-rated senior living financings placed in the bond market since COVID-19, and provided close to $6 million of expendable proceeds, that combined with remaining funds from the Series 2017B Bonds and $1 million+ in borrower equity, will fund predevelopment costs associated with the Phase II.
With Sims’ leadership and the collaborative work of SearsStone’s senior management team, Board, Management Company (Retirement Living Associates), Developer (Greenbrier) and the financing working group, SearStone successfully completed the financing and obtained bondholder consent to issue the proposed debt; secured sufficient pre-development capital to pursue Phase II; and provided covenant relief and maintained sufficient operating, financial and strategic flexibility to implement the future expansion to optimize its campus.
“SearStone has once again benefitted from the superb leadership of Aaron Rulnick and the Sims team. Our financing would have been challenging in any environment, but we were facing a tight time-frame in a market shut-down by COVID. Sims worked tirelessly and creatively to overcome obstacles, and we are so pleased with the result. SearStone can continue to pursue the Highview Expansion project, which will right-size and optimize our campus, with the financial resources and flexibility we need to be successful,” said Stan Brading, President, Samaritan Housing Foundation, Inc.
HJ SIMS: Founded in 1935, HJ Sims is a privately held investment bank and wealth management firm, headquartered in Fairfield, CT, with nationwide locations. www.hjsims.com. Investments involve risk, including loss of principal. This is not an offer to sell or buy any investment. Testimonials may not be representative of another client’s experience. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Member FINRA, SIPC. Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram Twitter.