Cerberus acquires Caritas Christi Health Care

The private equity firm: Cerberus Capital Management

The hospital system: Caritas Christi Health Care

The price: $895 million

The scoop: This $895 million transaction included six Boston-area facilities and was the first ever hospital deal involving private equity firm Cerberus Capital Management, which owns Steward. It was best known for taking a large stake in the struggling carmaker Chrysler after German auto giant Daimler washed its hands of its 1998 acquisition.

Although the six Caritas Christi hospitals will be converted to for-profit status, they will continue their Catholic-oriented mission. "The bottom line is that (Cerberus) will put in some business discipline, and provide some capital," said Michael Lane, managing director of Navigant Capital Advisers in Chicago.

Steward later tried to acquire the long-distressed Jackson Health System in Florida for $1.1 billion, but that deal fell through. Expect the Steward/Cerberus combo to be undeterred.

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