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Fort Worth, SF private equity firm partners for autism therapy organization

🕐 3 min read

Fort Worth and San Francisco-based TPG Capital announced Feb. 1 it has entered into a partnership with Lani Fritts, a highly-regarded and accomplished leader in behavioral health, to form Kadiant Inc. Kadiant is a mission-driven organization that seeks to provide high-quality Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy and related critical services to individuals diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

Kadiant is committed to building a leading autism services company by providing the best clinical outcomes and client experience. Kadiant will focus on partnering with existing high-quality providers to develop the depth and breadth of their services, integrating them into a common organization, and expanding access by opening new locations.

TPG Capital has committed $300 million of equity capital to support Kadiant’s launch and growth strategy. Fritts will serve as the chief executive officer of the new company. Fred Cohen, M.D., co-founder of Vida Ventures, will serve on Kadiant’s board. Vida Ventures will invest in the platform alongside TPG Capital.

According to the TPG news release, approximately one in 40 children across the country are diagnosed with ASD. The number of those affected by ASD has quadrupled over the past 15 years, and throughout this time, ABA therapy has emerged as the principal form of treatment. The method, which involves intensive in-person behavioral therapy, is widely-recognized as the most effective standard for care. Currently, it is estimated that more than 15 percent of individuals with ASD seeking ABA therapy are on waitlists.

“Kadiant aspires to enable individuals with autism to live their absolute best lives,” said Fritts. “With a passionate commitment to rigorous clinical standards, research, and outcome-driven approaches, and an exceptional mission-driven focus, we are striving to create an empowered community for our clients, their families, and our team members. I am thrilled to work with TPG; their deep understanding of excellence and innovation in healthcare make them the ideal partner to fulfill this mission.”

In 2009, Fritts co-founded Trumpet Behavioral Health, a leading provider of ABA therapy for children, adolescents, and adults with ASD. Fritts was also a founding board member and the first treasurer of The Council for Autism Service Providers, a nonprofit association focused on cultivating, sharing, and advocating for provider best practices in autism services.

“Despite growing awareness of the need for autism services, many living with ASD still do not have easy access to high-quality, specialized care. With Kadiant, we hope to positively impact this imbalance by building an organization focused on providing clinical and operational excellence at scale,” said Katherine Wood of TPG Capital. “TPG Capital’s healthcare team has a long history of partnering with management to build companies that deliver value to the healthcare system, improve the lives of patients, and create new opportunities for employees. It’s a privilege to partner with Lani, who shares these core values, and I look forward to working together to deliver on Kadiant’s mission.”

Cohen is a 30-plus year veteran of the medical and life sciences industry, as a physician, investor, and entrepreneur. He is the co-founder of Sweetwater Spectrum, a nonprofit, long-term living community for adults with ASD located in Sonoma, California.

“I have been involved with the ASD community for decades in both a professional and personal capacity and have witnessed firsthand the positive impact that a dedicated ABA treatment program can achieve,” said Cohen. “I have known the TPG healthcare team for many years, and I am confident in the insight and strong business-building capability they will bring to the Kadiant platform. Their expertise, combined with Lani’s track record of serving the ASD community, make for an exciting combination.”

www.kadiant.com

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