Byline: Anna Peysner
IT IS currently a sellers' market in the care home sector, with consolidation driving higher prices.
Larger companies are buying up smaller independent operators in order to build up national operations with the independents offering "flagship" assets and practices and where subsequently independent and larger corporates can benefit from economies of scale.
But this is in its early stages, with even the larger companies still only representing a modest percentage of the total market.
County Durham company Stonelea Healthcare was particularly well-placed in this buoyant market, having three prime properties and an excellent management team.
The company was built up over 20 years by John Harris, who had the homes built in Easington and Seaham.
He says: "In 2002, the Government brought out new national minimum …