HOUSTON, June 1, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Carriage Services, Inc. (NYSE: CSV) is extremely pleased to announce that we have acquired Bradshaw-Carter Memorial & Funeral Services and Cypress Fairbanks Funeral Home, both in Houston, as the newest Being The Best operating members of the Carriage family of elite funeral homes. Bradshaw-Carter was founded in 2003 and opened in March 2004 as a "Vision Come True" by Ron Bradshaw in partnership with Tripp Carter. Ron was previously a highly respected interior decorator in New York City renowned for re-creating historic European looks in five-star hotels and the grandest upper eastside townhomes. Bradshaw-Carter, which primarily serves the inner loop oldest neighborhoods in Houston, has been described and is known nationally as "the prettiest funeral home in America," more akin to an elegant "Baronial Mansion" decorated with Ron's collection of beautiful antiques with personalized service to match that is second to none.
Ron and Tripp grew Bradshaw-Carter rapidly and in 2008 acquired Cypress-Fairbanks Funeral Home in the booming and growing Northwest Houston market. After Ron's tragic death from cancer in 2008, Tripp has continued to grow both businesses, which now serve over five hundred families annually.
Mel Payne, Chairman and CEO of Carriage, stated, "My wife Karen and I met Tripp about six years ago and became social friends, but he and I also connected on our common passion and purpose that a funeral should always be meaningfully customized and never 'corporatized,' each one carefully designed around the unique and specific relevance of the deceased loved one to family and friends. As Tripp grew the business larger, we would occasionally have lunch and discuss how a marriage between Carriage and Bradshaw-Carter would be a wonderful win-win partnership where all the Carriage Being The Best support teams and services would enable Tripp and his team to focus only on growing the market share by being even more visible in the community while continuing the 'one of a kind' high value personalized service of Bradshaw-Carter.
"And on a very personal level, I was devastated when two of my dearest personal friends and my wonderful mother-in-law died over the past fifteen years and Carriage did not have a local facility at that time to handle their funeral and service their families. No longer, as we now have Bradshaw-Carter and Cypress-Fairbanks joining our two Schmidt west Houston locations, including our new showcase facility on the Grand Parkway near Katy.
"Not only does the acquisition of both Bradshaw-Carter Memorial & Funeral Services and Cypress Fairbanks Funeral Home expand Carriage's presence in the large strategic Houston market, but also demonstrates our continued mission to only affiliate with the best remaining independent funeral homes in the country. Tripp is a member of Selected Independent Funeral Homes with a membership of about 1,500 and personally has so much energy and passion that it is a certainty that his business will benefit greatly from Carriage's decentralized partnership model. Additionally, today is the 25th Anniversary of Carriage's founding, and this announcement on Bradshaw-Carter is a testament to the Being The Best Vision I had for Carriage on June 1, 1991, a vision that will live on locally with Tripp Carter," concluded Mr. Payne.
Tripp Carter said, "We are honored to join the other elite independent family owned funeral homes that have chosen to be part of the Carriage Being The Best family of businesses, while striving to become even better and more successful in the future with all the support that Carriage provides under its decentralized Standards Operating Model. Bradshaw-Carter Memorial & Funeral Services and Cypress Fairbanks Funeral Home will now have customized value added support resources to complement the sensitive and respective services on which we have built our reputation, which in combination will enable us to seize upon the wonderful growth opportunity that is available in the Houston market."
Carriage Services is a leading provider of funeral and cemetery services and merchandise in the United States. Carriage operates 169 funeral homes in 27 states and 32 cemeteries in 11 states.
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SOURCE Carriage Services, Inc.