CarePatrol joins ComForCare under The Riverside Company umbrella as part of a multi-brand platform

to serve aging adults across the continuum of care.

By Janice Hoppe-Spiers

With a variety of senior housing options available, choosing the right one is often one of the most difficult decisions to make for an older adult. For more than two decades, CarePatrol has been dedicated to assessing an individual’s level of care requirements and recommending senior housing options to best meet their needs.  

Chuck Bongiovanni founded the Gilbert, Ariz.-based company in 1994 after seeing firsthand the problems that occur because seniors and their families are not well-equipped or have the time to find the safest senior living option on their own. “I was a home health social worker working for a hospital and my job was to visit seniors after they had been discharged from the hospital,” he remembers. “One day, I got a call from my boss who asked me to stop by and see a client at the facility she was in and she was threatening to leave.”

“The facility was known for dementia care, but what I saw was a 74-year-old woman with no dementia or Alzheimer’s, but it was the only facility her daughter knew,” he continues. “As I drove back to the hospital from the facility, an industry was born.”CarePatrol fact box

Bongiovanni came up with the idea for CarePatrol and asked his boss if he left in one month to pursue this dream, if she would give him clients. “I quit one month later and at the time, I was newly divorced and had custody of my six-month-old son, so I quickly became the fastest marketing social worker on the planet and learned everything I need to know,” he remembers. “It really is a rags to riches story because at the time I didn’t have two dimes to rub together.”

Today, CarePatrol is the nation’s largest senior placement franchise helping families find safer care options that include assisted living, independent living, memory care, in-home care and nursing homes. The company has 150 senior advisors located throughout the country to meet with families and guide them through the process. “Our service is free to families because we get paid by the facilities we are contracted with,” Bongiovanni explains. 

The Right Fit

CarePatrol was named the top one percent fast-growing franchises in the nation by Entrepreneur Magazine in 2015. The company boasts an affordable business model with low overhead as franchisees average 1.8 employees and work from home. “Profitability is the highest you’ll see in any franchise,” Bongiovanni says. “We don’t do any TV, radio or money mailers; it’s all face to face with medical professional, healthcare facilities, home health agencies and financial planners.” 

Although CarePatrol’s franchise owners become senior care advisors and are viewed as subject matter experts in their communities, the majority of its franchisees did not have any experience in senior care before coming to the company. “We look for people who are outgoing and assertive to have the tough conversations,” Bongiovanni says. “It’s a major decision in someone’s life and we look out for the best interest of our patients.” 

CarePatrol offers franchisees extensive training promotes an interdependent franchisee relationship. “We spend 16 days with the franchisee within the first year because our goal isn’t to make them independent, but interdependent to become the most profitable,” Bongiovanni explains. “We use a lot of data to decide where franchisees should go to market and unlike other industries, the smaller the territory, the better they do.” 

Continuum of Care Model

CarePatrol’s goal is to add 100 more franchisees, secure contracts with major healthcare organizations and be seen as a partner in healthcare over the next five years. To achieve these goals, Bongiovanni and his wife, Becky, chose to become a part of The Riverside Company under its ComForCare platform. ComForCare is a premier provider of private in-home care services to people of all ages with 200 franchised locations. 

“We were being chased by a number of private equity firms, but Riverside called me every year for three years and after the success they had with Neighborly [formerly Dwyer Group] and bringing Steve Greenbaum aboard to oversee the whole platform, that locked it in for us,” Bongiovanni says. 

Riverside entered the homecare industry in 2017 with its acquisition of ComForCare and named Greenbaum CEO of ComForCare in January 2018. As the founder and former CEO of PostNet, Greenbaum developed a global printing and marketing services franchise, bringing 25 years of experience in growing and supporting a successful franchise with him. 

“When Riverside made the investment in ComForCare and CarePatrol, they saw a real opportunity in the aging adult space and wanted to achieve something similar to what they did with Neighborly – build a multi-brand platform company that serves aging adults along the continuum of care,” Greenbaum says. “Riverside recruited me to grow the multi-brand platform of well-run professional companies and we are excited about the opportunity in the space.”

CarePatrol was Riverside’s second acquisition into the multi-brand platform and is looking at investments three and four now for 2019. “Our objective is fast growth and nimble franchise companies in the adult care space,” Greenbaum notes. “My short-term goals are brand integration and ensuring systems, people and processes are all aligned with the organization’s growth. Growth, both organic and through acquisition, is a big focus right now and then we’ll start to build out infrastructure to manage all the brands in the portfolio.” 

Moving forward, the goals will continue to be to create an organization that serves aging adults across the continuum of care. “We are focused on the overall wellness of the client, which is why we are taking a broader, more diverse approach,” Greenbaum says. “That doesn’t mean just home care or placement, but nutrition, movement, memory, and I think that’s what sets this organization and brand apart. Our goal is to be the central resource for everything aging adults in the country need, and achieve that through the multi-brand platform.”



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