Further growth for VetPartners as Italian practice base expands with new acquisitions

VETPARTNERS has continued its expansion in Italy with the acquisition of four practices.

Centro Medico Veterinario Montecchio, a small animal clinic in Vicenza, has joined the VetPartners family of practices in Italy, along with Clinica Veterinary Colombo, a small animal practice in Camaiore, near Tuscany, and Clinica Veterinary Europa, a small animal practice in Florence.

Ospedale S Lucia in Verona, the main 24-hour practice in Verona, is the latest practice to join VetPartners Italy.

VetPartners is now preparing for further growth and expects to have doubled its number of practices in Italy by the end of January after entering due diligence with three other businesses.

The veterinary group is building a platform of practices in Italy after gaining a strong foothold in the country in 2019 when five practices joined the group.

Ospedale Degli Animali in Ferrara, Vet Hospital H24 Firenze in Florence and Ospedale Veterinario Dott Peressotti in Parma were the founding Italian practices to join VetPartners in November 2019. They were quickly joined by Ospedale Veterinario San Francesco in Treviso and Clinica Veterinaria Costa D’Argento in Orbetello.

VetPartners Italy Managing Director David Giraldi is preparing to welcome more practices to the group after expansion was curtailed due to Covid-19. The effects of the global health pandemic are now expected to fuel further growth of VetPartners as practice owners seek to be part of a larger veterinary group.

Dr Giraldi said: “We expect to have doubled the size of the VetPartners in Italy by the end of January, which is a great achievement because completing acquisitions takes a lot of effort due to Covid-19. People are working exceptionally hard to maintain our vision of being the veterinary group of choice when many practice teams are suffering a lot of anxiety and emotional challenges.

“VetPartners’ Italian team and the central team in the UK have collaborated so well and to have these four acquisitions concludes a meaningful objective. Although there is competition, we want to expand and become the veterinary group of choice.

“There is so much enthusiasm for what we are creating in Italy and, even in uncertain times, there is great opportunity. Covid-19 has created a VUCA environment and during times of volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity, people want a safe house for their business, where there is leadership, safety in numbers, organisation and structure.

“We are developing an excellent reputation in Italy as there is strong interest in joining a company that shares the veterinary profession’s values. We are a family of practices and people want to be part of a circle of trust, where people are looking after you and your practice.”

VetPartners, which has its headquarters in York, was established by CEO Jo Malone, a UK vet, five years ago, with the backing of a private equity group.

After building up a strong base of small animal practices across the UK, VetPartners moved into the equine, mixed and farm sectors in 2018. It now has 140 of the UK’s most respected and trusted veterinary practices, with more than 400 sites and 5,514 employees.

To support its growth, the group is supported by leading international investment company, BC Partners, which has Euros 17 billion of assets under management in private equity and credit across the globe.

Owner Giovanni Barbieri plans to remain at Centro Medico Veterinario Montecchio, a clinic he has built up over the last 20 years, to lead his team of nine vets and an admin manager.

Francesca Rizzo is remaining at Clinica Veterinary Colombo, which has 23 team members, while Carlo and Franco Pizzirani plan to stay at Clinica Veterinary Europa as part of a 15-strong practice team. Paolo Beverari will continue to lead a team of 18 vets, a manager, a front office manager and five nurses at Ospedale S Lucia.

For media enquiries, please contact Amanda Little, VetPartners Senior PR and Communications Manager, on 07970 198 492 or email amanda.little@vetpartners.co.uk

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