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ACM approves merger between Bergman Clinics and NL Healthcare Clinics


31 January 2019

Specialised clinics offer superior care at competitive rates

The Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets green-lit the merger between Bergman Clinics and NL Healthcare Clinics (NLHCC) on 17 December 2018. With their specialised clinics, Bergman Clinics and NLHCC are leaders in the Netherlands in the medical disciplines of ophthalmology, orthopaedics, dermatology, plastic surgery and several other specific types of insured specialised medical care. The combined clinics seek to offer high-quality patient-centred care at competitive prices at facilities throughout the Netherlands. Following a transitional stage, the merged healthcare chains will start operating under the name Bergman Clinics. Newly appointed CEO Hans van der Heyden will assume office on the official completion of the merger of the two clinics in early January.

Once the merger is completed, the consolidated Bergman Clinics will be the market leader in treatments for health-insurance-covered hip, knee, shoulder, foot/ankle, back and eye conditions and plastic surgery procedures. The new Bergman Clinics also provides specialised care for skin conditions, gastrointestinal disorders, and pelvic floor dysfunction for women.

The new group will operate a 52-branch nationwide network of clinics with consolidated revenue of approximately €230 million and around 1,500 employees. The group expects to be able to create new jobs in the coming years by expanding existing clinics and opening new ones. The company also aims to drive innovation in the Dutch healthcare sector.

Discerning and selective clients

The merger comes at a time when Dutch consumers are becoming progressively more discerning and selective in their choices, and this certainly extends to medical services. Both patients and health insurance companies are increasingly prioritising proven quality of treatments, cost management, short waiting times and the overall quality of services provided. The specialised Bergman Clinics are able to provide high quality at competitive rates, which they combine with a client-focused approach, where service and client experience are vital.

Bergman Clinics will accommodate the group’s central support services at the Naarden site. Hans van der Heyden will chair the group’s Executive Board and head up the management team. For clients and referrers such as general practitioners, everything will remain unchanged in terms of day-to-day interaction with the clinics.

New Bergman Clinics CEO Hans van der Heyden is an experienced leader who previously held managerial positions at Procter & Gamble and other companies, as well as being a member of the global management of GrandVision. After being in charge of the Benelux market for eight years, he served as CEO of GrandVision USA, during which time he managed the integration of the For Eyes optical retail chain.

Current CEO Bart Malenstein will remain with the company as an Executive Board member for some time on completion of the merger, and both the Malenstein family and NL Healthcare Clinics shareholder NPM Capital – a subsidiary of family business SHV – will remain shareholders in the new company.

Current Bergman Clinics CEO Bert Malenstein: “We are ready to leverage the opportunities offered by this merger together. With our pooled resources, treatment teams will be able to focus their attention even more closely on their specialisation. There will also be more room to invest in technological innovation, digitalisation and training and education. When we first announced this merger back in September 2018, the feedback we received was very positive. It’s up to us now to prove that greater focus and the pooling of our resources lead to more efficient cost management and improved results. In appointing Hans van der Heyden, we have brought on board a strong leader who can add value through his experience, both in the integration process and in our objective to keep improving client experiences. Hans has worked with consumer brands for many years and is familiar with the healthcare industry. This is the perfect combination for the position of CEO at Bergman Clinics.”

Rutger Ruigrok, Managing Director at NPM Capital: “The scale, efficiency, professionalism and client focus of the merged organisation will strengthen our clinics’ brand and performance and will enable them to make an even more valuable contribution to the Dutch healthcare landscape.”