CINCINNATI, Dec 19, 2003 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Roto-Rooter Inc.
("Roto-Rooter") (NYSE:RRR) (OTCBB:CHEQP) has entered into a definitive
merger agreement to acquire VITAS Healthcare Corporation ("VITAS").
Currently, Roto-Rooter holds common shares representing approximately
37 percent of the VITAS outstanding common shares. Roto-Rooter will
acquire the portion of VITAS not already owned by it through its
Comfort Care Holdings subsidiary for aggregate consideration of
approximately $410 million in cash (including the refinancing of
existing VITAS debt and other payments to be made in connection with
Under the terms of the merger agreement, shareholders of VITAS
will receive cash of $30 per share. The merger is expected to close
before March 15, 2004. The closing is contingent upon the receipt of
certain regulatory approvals and the satisfaction of other customary
conditions, including a financing condition.
VITAS, a pioneer and leader in the hospice movement since 1978, is
the nation's largest provider of end-of-life care. Headquartered in
Miami, Florida, VITAS operates 25 hospice programs in eight states
(California, Florida, Illinois, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas
and Wisconsin). VITAS reported revenues of more than $420 million for
its fiscal year ending September 30, 2003. VITAS employs more than
5,700 professionals who care for more than 7,900 terminally ill
patients daily, primarily in the patients' homes, but also in the
company's 17 hospice inpatient units as well as in hospitals, nursing
homes and assisted living facilities/residential care facilities for
Roto-Rooter Inc. (www.RotoRooter.com), headquartered in
Cincinnati, is a New York Stock Exchange-listed corporation operating
in the residential and commercial repair-and-maintenance-service
industry through two wholly owned subsidiaries. Roto-Rooter Inc. is
North America's largest provider of plumbing and drain cleaning
services. Service America Network Inc. provides major-appliance and
heating/air-conditioning repair, maintenance, and replacement
Statements in this press release or in other Roto-Rooter
communications may relate to future events or Roto-Rooter's future
performance. Such statements are forward-looking statements and are
based on present information Roto-Rooter has related to its existing
business circumstances. Investors are cautioned that such
forward-looking statements are subject to inherent risk that actual
results may differ materially from such forward-looking statements,
including the possibility that Roto-Rooter's acquisition of VITAS may
not be completed. Further, investors are cautioned that Roto-Rooter
does not assume any obligation to update forward-looking statements
based on unanticipated events or changed expectations.
Timothy S. O'Toole, 513-762-6702
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