Mednax Backs Pediatric Care Startup

Oct. 8, 2021
The public company and the Y Combinator graduate plan to open 100 clinics nationwide in the coming years

Physician services giant Mednax Inc. has invested $20 million in a young pediatric care venture with plans to open 100 clinics around the country in coming years.

Mednax’s investment in Brave Care, which was announced Thursday, gives the Florida-based company a minority stake as well as a board seat that has been taken by Executive Vice President and Chief Development Officer Jim Swift. Other investors also have pumped $5 million into Brave Care, which previously received $18 million in funding. Brave Care – launched in 2019 and a graduate of the famed Y Combinator accelerator in Silicon Valley – runs three bricks-and-mortar clinics in Portland, Oregon, and Fayetteville, North Carolina and plans to soon open clinics in Portland and Austin, Texas. The company also markets medical advice around the clock via a nurse line and a mobile app.

Mednax employs more than 2,300 doctors in 39 states and Puerto Rico and in the first half of this year posted a profit of nearly $53 million on revenues of $920 million. Spokespeople for Mednax and Brave Care did not respond to questions about where the companies might prioritize buying or developing some of their 100 planned clinics or if they’ll lean more toward stand-alone facilities or more traditional retail spaces.

The Brave Care move comes nearly seven months after Mednax first moved into urgent/primary pediatric services by acquiring NightLight Pediatric Urgent Care in the Houston area, a buy executives called “the first step in a new strategy to reimagine pediatric ‘total’ care for patients in select markets.” The NightLight locations will be rebranded to Mednax’s Pediatrix name, as will future clinics built or bought under the Brave Care partnership.

At the end of last year, Mednax employed more than 570 pediatric physicians focused on intensive care, cardiology, urology and other specialties. In May of last year, it sold its anesthesiology services medical group for $50 million (and up to $250 million down the road) and last December divested its radiology services division for $885 million to focus more sharply on women’s and children’s care.

“I was thrilled when my colleagues and I visited Brave Care clinics this past summer,” Mednax CEO Mark Ordan said in a statement. “Combining the Brave Care team’s insights and access to their operating and communications systems with our world-class clinical expertise will help propel us forward to provide broad access to Pediatrix’s unmatched patient-first care. This is another major step to solidify our focus.”

Mednax shares (Ticker: MD) closed Thursday at $27.44, down slightly on the day. They have risen nearly 10 percent over the past six months, growing the company’s market capitalization to nearly $2.4 billion.

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