Mars Petcare announced Oct. 9 it will acquire BluePearl, the nation’s biggest chain of companion animal specialty and emergency care clinics. Mars Petcare owns Banfield Pet Hospital and pet food brands such as Royal Canin and Pedigree, making it the largest pet nutrition and veterinary care provider in the world. Once the transaction is completed, the acquisition would further Mars Petcare’s reach in the pet health market, enabling the conglomerate “to provide a continuum of high quality care across the entire companion animal health care sector in line with its vision to make a better world for pets,” according to a company press release.
Darryl Shaw, BluePearl CEO, said in the release, “This exciting development will enable us to make key investments in our people, facilities, systems, and infrastructure, allowing us to continue to grow and drive up standards of veterinary care.”
He added, “Joining with Mars Petcare will help us provide even greater resources to support the local veterinary communities we serve.”
Shaw said that BluePearl will continue to operate as a separate, distinct business unit and will not offer primary care services.
BluePearl started in 1996 when Shaw and his brother, Dr. Neil Shaw, started a private specialty practice in Tampa, Florida. They grew the practice and added locations, then later merged with the Veterinary Specialty and Emergency Center of Kansas City to create BluePearl Veterinary Partners in 2008. The company now has 53 locations across 18 states. It employs more than 3,000 people, including over 600 veterinarians.
Mars Petcare has more than 37,000 employees across 60 countries; 38 brands make up the Petcare portfolio. In 2007, Mars Petcare acquired Banfield, which is the largest general veterinary practice in the world with more than 3,200 veterinarians at over 900 veterinary hospitals in the U.S. and Mexico. More recently, Mars Petcare bought the Iams, Eukanuba, and Natura brands of pet foods from Procter & Gamble Co. in 2014.
Terms of the Mars deal were not disclosed, and closing of the transaction is subject to regulatory approvals.
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