The company formerly known as Erickson Living has a new name and a new five-year plan to expand and upgrade its portfolio of continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs).
The Catonsville, Maryland-based CCRC developer, owner and operator —- now officially called Erickson Senior Living — has committed about $3 billion in self-funding for the construction of 5,000 new apartment homes across its portfolio through both new development and expansions of existing communities.
Erickson Senior Living currently manages 20 communities across the U.S., and represented the sixth-larger senior living provider in Argentum’s 2020 Largest Providers Report with 22,010 units.
The company previously outlined a $2 billion, five-year development pipeline in 2018, and a small number of those projects are likely included in the company’s new $3 billion pipeline. But overall, the new pipeline and rebranding represent a “fresh, five-year look,” according to Tom Neubauer, the company’s executive vice president of sales, marketing and communications.
“We feel like we’re very well positioned to execute on our growth plans, and this rebranding effort is part and parcel and integral to that,” Neubauer told Senior Housing News.
For new development, Erickson is looking at markets all across the country, including in West Coast states such as California and Southwestern states such as Arizona. The company also plans to expand on “beachhead sites” at communities in Colorado, Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts.
Erickson is moving several projects through its current growth pipeline. Those include a community opening this summer in Naples, Florida and the opening of a first phase of a Richmond, Virginia community in late 2022. Further down the road, Erickson is also working on a community in Braddock, Virginia;, a property in Clarksville, Maryland; and the redevelopment of the Marriott International global headquarters in Bethesda, Maryland.
As it has grown, Erickson has tweaked its CCRC model to fit the markets where those communities are located. For example, the community slated to open in Naples has larger floor plans than usual but only 350 units — a number that is large for some providers, but relatively small for Erickson, which boasts the largest CCRC in the country in Catonsville at 1,815 market-rate units, according to the LeadingAge Ziegler 200.
“We may build as few as 500 apartment homes on that piece of property, and [on] some that have enough opportunity, we may build 1000 or 1500. It really depends on the area, the need, the size of the campus,” Neubauer said. “[For] people who know us and who are used to the large, three-neighborhood campuses, you can see that we’re building a community that’s appropriate for Naples.”
At the same time, Erickson adopted a new name, logo and website to complement its growth strategy. The company added the word “senior” to its brand to reflect the people that the company serves, bucking a recent industry trend of senior housing companies dropping that word from their names and brands.
“What we kept coming back to was, we’re in the business of serving seniors, and we’re very proud to be doing what we’re doing,” Neubauer said. “So, it only made sense that we were going to add the word ‘senior’ to our name.”
Erickson Senior Living expects to have fully transitioned all of its communities’ signage, uniforms and marketing materials by the end of the summer, he added.
This isn’t the first time Erickson has changed its name to better reflect its business model. In 2010, the company changed its name from Erickson Retirement Communities to Erickson Living. And now, the new name will help propel the company into a new decade.
“It’s, in my opinion, the ideal time to be clearly communicating who we are and what we do,” Neubauer said.
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