Ventas Inc., Louisville, Ky., and ElderTrust, Wilmington, Del., have announced a merger agreement under which Ventas will acquire all outstanding common shares of ElderTrust in a cash transaction valued at $184 million.After completing the transaction, Ventas would own ElderTrust's 18 health care and senior housing assets, whose principal tenant is the eldercare and therapy business unit of Genesis Healthcare Ventures, according to the two real estate investment trusts. ElderTrust owns approximately 96% of the partnership units in ElderTrust Operating LP, which owns all the ElderTrust properties. Ventas said it expects to acquire all the limited partnership units in ETOP directly from their owners at $12.50 per share. The REITs can be found online at http://www.ventasreit.com and http://www.eldertrust.com.

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