ReNew, Merrill Gardens Form Joint Venture to Operate Bulk of Former New Senior Portfolio

SEATTLE and TOLEDO, Ohio — Merrill Gardens, a Seattle-based owner-operator, has formed a joint venture with ReNew, a Toledo-based REIT. The two companies will co-own 26 of the 28 seniors housing properties that ReNew is acquiring from New Senior Investment Group.

In addition to owning a minority stake in the venture, Merrill Gardens will take over operations of the 26 communities. The two companies have worked together before on other joint ventures.

An existing operating partner of ReNew will operate the final two communities in the portfolio, with ReNew taking a full ownership stake in those properties.

The transaction brings Merrill Gardens’ total portfolio to 65 communities in 17 states.

Of the 26 communities that will now be part of the Merrill Gardens portfolio, 15 are currently managed by Blue Harbor, the Portland-based management company that Merrill Gardens purchased in early November. Merrill Gardens also recently announced the addition of Tana Gall as president, replacing Dave Eskenazy who plans to retire early next year. Gall was the CEO at Blue Harbor for the past three years and she will now oversee the expanded Merrill Gardens portfolio.

“This agreement provides an important chance for us to expand our footprint and diversify our seniors housing product by entering the more moderately priced market and offering quality senior living to residents who are focused on that price point,” says Bill Pettit, president of the R.D. Merrill Company, parent company of Merrill Gardens.

The acquisition is slated for completion in the first quarter of 2020.