March 7, 2018 / 7:04 PM / 3 months ago

Tennessee-based nursing home chain Orianna files for bankruptcy

WILMINGTON, Del. (Reuters) - The owner of Orianna Health Systems filed for bankruptcy late Tuesday after reaching a restructuring deal with its landlord, the second large nursing home operator to seek Chapter 11 protection this week due to unpaid rent.

4 West Holdings Inc, which operates as Orianna, reached a deal with its landlord Omega Healthcare Investors Inc and agreed to transfer 23 facilities to a new operator and provide for the sale of 19 others, according to court records.

Orianna owes $52 million in rent to Omega, a real estate investment trust or REIT, and $67 million to vendors as well as other debts, according to court records. Orianna is Omega’s largest tenant, according to securities filings.

Shares of Omega were up 0.4 percent at $27.26 in afternoon trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

The company is based in Nashville, Tennessee, according to its website, although in court records it listed its principal place of business as Dallas, the location of the company’s chief restructuring officer.

Large U.S. nursing home chains have struggled to keep up with rent payments due to changing Medicaid and Medicare reimbursement rates, rising costs and low occupancy rates.

The Orianna deal follows Monday’s bankruptcy filing by HCR ManorCare Inc, the second-largest U.S. nursing home operator, which transferred ownership to its landlord, Quality Care Properties Inc. ManorCare owed $446 million in rent under a master lease that covered 289 facilities.

The largest U.S. nursing home operator, Genesis Healthcare Inc, avoided a bankruptcy filing last month after it reached a restructuring deal with its lender and REIT landlords.

Orianna operates skilled nursing facilities in seven states, with around 4,500 beds and 5,000 employees.

(Corrects headline and first paragraph to show that Orianna is based in Tennessee, not Texas, adds details about the company’s location in fifth paragraph.)

Reporting by Tom Hals in Wilmington, Delaware; Editing by James Dalgleish

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