Thurston Group, a Chicago-based private equity firm focused on investing in health care companies, has created a new mental health platform called ARC Health. It formed the platform in partnership with Advanced Recovery Concepts, an Ohio-based outpatient mental health provider.
Many of the specifics around the new platform — such as the financial details of the partnership behind it — are hazy. However, here’s what Thurston has announced so far: ARC is based in Cleveland, Ohio, and will provide virtual, inpatient and outpatient mental health treatment. The platform will address patients’ behavioral health needs in holistic, innovative ways and offer value-added services such as Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) and Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) to supplement its more mainstream offerings.
In partnership with Thurston, ARC aims to partner with like-minded providers across the country as part of its aggressive growth strategy. The model is “poised to expand nationally” in the future, Patrick J. Haynes III, CEO and chairman of Thurston Group, said in a press release announcing the news, which was released Monday.
Meanwhile, Boris Royak and Amit Mohan — the executive directors of ARC Health and Advanced Recovery Concepts — seem to agree.
“This opens tremendous opportunities for us to build a premier, caring behavioral health practice,” the pair said in the press release. “Our goal is to offer a broad spectrum of excellent services and cutting-edge technology to our patients, while fostering a great work environment for our providers and staff.”
ARC Health isn’t the only new behavioral health platform on the block. Thurston Group’s creation of ARC comes just a couple months after the global investment giant KKR formed a new mental services company called Geode Health.
Rather than purchasing an existing provider, KKR opted to build the platform, deepening its behavioral health footprint and creating a totally new company to partner with providers and offer in-person and virtual outpatient mental health treatment nationwide.
“We will both be acquiring psychiatry and therapy practices in our key markets, as well as augmenting those through clinician recruiting and office expansions to make sure that we can treat more patients with our footprint,” Geode CEO Gaurav Bhattacharyya told Behavioral Health back in June. “We are also working with the leading commercial payers in each of our markets to get in-network so patients do not have to pay out-of-pocket and have access to more affordable care.”
The behavioral health PE trend doesn’t stop with Thurston and KKR: So far, private equity buyers have fueled the majority of 2021’s behavioral health M&A activity. In the first half of the year, private equity buyers accounted for 42 of the industry’s 57 deals, according to the health care M&A firm Mertz Taggart. That said, most of those transactions fell into the add-on category, rather than into the platform deal camp.
Behavioral Health Business reached out to Thurston Group for this story but had not yet heard back at the time of publication.