Business Irish

Sunday 25 August 2019

Edward Haughey Jr sets up US vet group

Edward Haughey Jr
Edward Haughey Jr

John Reynolds

Edward Haughey Jr, son of the Co Louth-born founder of Newry veterinary pharmaceuticals firm Norbrook Laboratories Lord Ballyedmond, has co-founded Cara Veterinary, a business that plans to develop and acquire family-owned vet surgeries across the US, the Sunday Independent understands.

The Eton and Trinity College-educated businessman who is a director of the family firm Norbrook and was a chief executive there for two years, is the CEO of the Denver-headquartered new US business.

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It is backed by three families, including the Haugheys, and aims to build "a long-term brand that is the choice for veterinarians to work and pet parents to trust".

Cara is "bringing together medical and surgical expertise, with a focus on a great family culture", according to president and chief veterinary officer of the firm Peter Brown, who has over 25 years' experience in running a private vet practice.

On Cara's website, Brown states: "This is a dream come true for me. I have been searching for an opportunity to build a company that represents what I have learned through my... journey [of building my own vet practice]... which had consistent double-digit revenue growth over two decades.

"I love this profession; it is the greatest career in the world, but... consolidation often damages the family culture that made a hospital successful. Job satisfaction is dropping and suicide rates are climbing. Cara will address these issues with its family approach."

Cara's other backers have experience in property and hospitality businesses, including ski and beach resorts, and hotels.

One of the families backing the firm is believed to be the Johnsons of South Carolina. Serial entrepreneur George Dean Johnson Jr was involved in the Extended Stay America and Blockbuster video store businesses.

His family is linked to hotel group OTO Development and investment firm WJ Partners, and also owns property firm Johnson Development Associates.

Haughey Jr did not respond to emails.

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