German Equity Partners IV (“GEP IV” or “Fund”), managed by the independent private equity firm ECM Equity Capital Management GmbH (‘ECM’), has acquired a stake in the urology specialist Uroviva, Switzerland’s largest provider of medical services in the field of urology. This was announced by ECM today following the closing of the transaction. As part of the transaction, the Fund takes a stake in Uroviva Group, which, in addition to the Uroviva Clinic in Bülach, includes a broad network of urology practices. The Uroviva practice network is comprised of eight urological practices and, in the future, one andrology practice, making it the leading urology competence centre in the canton of Zurich, Switzerland’s most important economic region. The previous shareholders – a group of partners consisting of Dr. Roger Gablinger, Dr. Michael Krause and Dr. Ladislav Prikler – will continue to actively shape Uroviva as shareholders and management team. With their medical competence and entrepreneurial experience, they will retain responsibility for the further development of the company. The parties have agreed not to disclose the purchase price or any additional details of the transaction.
Leading urology competence centre with a first-class reputation
With more than 26,000 patient treatments per year, Uroviva is one of the leading providers of medical services in the field of urology. In recent years, the company has developed into Switzerland’s leading competence centre with a network consisting of a clinic in Bülach, the only urological specialist clinic on the “hospital list” (“Spitalliste”) in the canton of Zurich, as well as the network of practices, and enjoys an excellent reputation. With a highly trained and experienced team of 21 doctors with complementary sub-specializations, Uroviva covers the entire range of urological services, from diagnostics and cancer therapy to highly complex surgical procedures. In addition to first-class medical know-how and proven care and service quality, Uroviva offers its patients innovative, state-of-the-art treatments. The Uroviva doctors at the clinic in Bülach were the first in the canton of Zurich to carry out the minimally invasive brachytherapy (internal radiation treatment for prostate cancer). The use of the state-of-the-art ‘Da Vinci’ robot operating system has also been part of the clinic’s service offering for many years. Patients also benefit from various partnerships with other clinics and medical practices as well as a culture that treats the patient as a customer or guest. The integrated platform consisting of the Uroviva clinic and the network of practices is able to ensure short waiting times and smooth access to highly specialised doctors. Hence, the well-being of the patient is always guaranteed.
Growth potential due to increasing numbers of patients and growing need for treatment in light of demographic development in Switzerland
Thanks to its excellent medical expertise and service quality as well as its loyal and satisfied patient base, Uroviva has shown significant growth in recent years in partnership with a number of clinics and medical practices. An increasingly ageing population, coupled with a growing awareness for health and well-being, is leading to an increasing demand for urological and andrological treatments.
In partnership with ECM, Uroviva intends to continue its successful growth path of recent years to ensure that the demand for high-quality medicine for an increasing number of patients in German-speaking Switzerland will continue to be met in the future. To achieve organic growth, the focus will lie on expanding the medical team, for which Uroviva offers an attractive platform, as well as further capacity expansion at the Uroviva Clinic in Bülach. In addition, further growth in the coming years will be facilitated through the opening of new urological practices. Two new practice locations are already scheduled to open next year. In addition, further synergies from the hospital and practice network are planned to be realised while the latter will be continuously expanded. In the course of the planned growth, Uroviva will also invest in the establishment and further professionalization of existing structures.
ECM has extensive experience in implementing growth as well as buy & build strategies in the medical field. For instance, DERMATOLOGIKUM HAMBURG, one of Europe’s largest private specialist institutions for the diagnosis and therapy of skin diseases, started its first foreign locations with the support of ECM in September 2017 with the opening of the DERMATOLOGIKUM ZÜRICH and in December 2017 with the opening of the DERMATOLOGIKUM WIEN. Other Swiss investments by GEP IV include the merger of WIENERS+WIENERS, the Hamburg-based provider of high-quality language services, with the Swiss translation service provider Apostroph, and the acquisition of the Zurich-based translation company Transcript Übersetzungen AG, as well as the investment in the frozen food provider KADI.
Continuity in management and medical staff
The partnership between ECM and Uroviva is characterised by continuity: the company will continue to be managed by its founders and shareholders, Dr. Roger Gablinger as well as Dr. Michael Krause and Dr. Ladislav Prikler in their roles as partners and senior physicians.
Dr. Roger Gablinger, founder and managing partner of Uroviva, said: “We have continuously developed Uroviva over the past years and have built up the company with its clinic and practices to become one of the leading experts in the field of urology in Switzerland, especially in the canton of Zurich. We are focused on the well-being of our patients, both medically and with regards to care and availability. We plan to make our high-quality treatments available to a wider number of patients in the future. In order to do so, we need strong partners with experience in implementing growth strategies and we are convinced that we have found them with ECM. We look forward to working together to consolidate and expand Uroviva’s leading position in urology in the canton of Zurich.”
Florian Kähler, partner and managing director of ECM added: “With its fully integrated range of state-of-the-art medical services in the field of urology, a highly trained medical team and the dedication of its employees, Uroviva has already become one of the leading providers in this field. In addition, we are convinced that, based on the trusted relationship we have already built up with Dr. Gablinger, Dr. Krause and Dr. Prikler, we will support the Company as a partner in realizing its huge potential as a growth platform, while preserving its culture and distinguishing features. I am personally looking forward to working with the Uroviva team.”
For this transaction, GEP IV was advised by Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy as well as Homburger (legal and structuring), goetzpartners (market due diligence), Ernst & Young (financial and tax), and Willis Towers Watson (insurance). The team at ECM responsible for the transaction is comprised of Florian Kähler, Alexander Schönborn, Marius Buxkämper, Max Thielemann und Benedikt Müller. Transaction initiation and advice for Uroviva was provided by Affentranger Associates and legal and tax advice was provided by VIALEX Attorneys at Law.
Headquartered in Bülach/ZH, the Uroviva Group is the largest provider of medical services in the field of urology in Switzerland, especially in the Canton of Zurich. Uroviva combines a highly specialized urological clinic with a network of eight urological practices and, in the future, an andrological practice. On this basis, more than 26,000 urological treatments per year are offered to the patients, including high quality and complex operations. A team of 21 experienced urologists with complementary sub-specializations at the Uroviva practices in combination with the Uroviva Clinic providing outstanding infrastructure, state-of-the-art technology and first-class personal service forms the leading urological competence centre in Switzerland.
For more information: www.uroviva.ch
On behalf of ECM:
Charles Barker Corporate Communications GmbH
Jan Hromadko, Kornelia Spodzieja, Phone 069 794090-44