Anne M. Eberhardt

Hagyard Equine Merges With National Vet Network

Hagyard will continue operating as an independent clinic.

Hagyard Equine Medical Institute in Lexington announced Jan. 19 a merger with Mixed Animal Veterinary Associates of North America, an umbrella organization for 22 equine, mixed animal, and companion animal veterinary practices in 11 states.

Each veterinary practice under the MAVANA banner is a shareholder, but operates independently and benefits from a corporate structure to deliver cost efficiencies, leverage economics of scale for improved purchasing power, offer more options for liquidity, and increase relevancy in the rapidly consolidating animal health industry. MAVANA itself is 95% veterinarian owned.

"Hagyard, with its excellent doctors and staff, will continue as it has for the past 140-plus years," said Dr. Luke Fallon, DVM, of Hagyard. "All of our staff and doctors who comprise the Hagyard family are custodians of this legacy. We are dedicated to actively managing one of the premier clinics in the world."

Fallon noted that beyond the purchasing power afforded through MAVANA on medication, medical supplies, and services like insurance, the merger provides an opportunity to share information across equine disciplines.

"The sport horse market is a big world, and with advanced reproductive techniques, for example, there is a lot of cross-pollination," Fallon said. "This also provides an opportunity for Hagyard, with its expertise, to expand into other markets."

Other MAVANA partners include Teigland, Franklin, and Brokken (an equine sports medicine practice based in Florida that specializes in Thoroughbreds) and the Chicago Equine Medical Center, which is a full-service veterinary hospital that serves racing and sport horse clients in the greater Chicago area. Other shareholders are located in California, Michigan, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

"Hagyard's partnership with the other MAVANA veterinary practices and veterinarians will only allow us to elevate our ability to offer our clients and their horses the highest level of care," said Dr. Stuart Brown, DVM, of Hagyard. "Furthermore, our practice and its members have long been committed to developing and mentoring the next generation of equine medical professionals, and our inclusion in MAVANA will allow us to continue to expand those efforts."

MAVANA was founded in December of 2016, with the merging of practices with gross revenues exceeding $55 million, according to a report by the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine.

"MAVANA practices have the highest standards of care when it comes to medicine and surgery, and they are owned by veterinarians who put a high priority on running better-managed veterinary practices," said MAVANA president Dr. Scott Spaulding in the University of Wisconsin report. Spaulding is a veterinarian and University of Wisconsin alum. "These owners place equal emphasis on business-related aspects of veterinary hospitals and the practice of veterinary medicine. We recognize change is coming to decades-old veterinary business models. We want to lead the way in developing new business models to benefit veterinary shareholders."

Clarification: An earlier version of this story included a projection from Dr. Scott Spaulding from a University of Wisconsin Veterinary School report regarding the role of MAVANA and its shareholders. For each member practice MAVANA will handle functions like insurance, human resources, and billing, for example, but all client communications and daily administration of all member practices are handled locally. All of Hagyard's client communications and management decisions will continue to be independently and locally as they have been in the past.