Malaysia’s IHH Healthcare to buy 31% stake in Fortis

Malaysia’s IHH Healthcare to buy 31% stake in Fortis

FILE PHOTO: A Fortis hospital building is pictured in Gurgaon, India, May 11, 2018. REUTERS/Saumya Khandelwal/File Photo

Fortis Healthcare board on Friday approved Rs 4,000-crore offer from Malaysia’s IHH Healthcare for 31.1% stake in it, valuing the cash-strapped firm at Rs 8,880 crore thus ending months of takeover battle.

IHH Healthcare, which is expected to gain majority control of India’s second-largest hospital chain after a mandatory open offer for an additional 26% stake, said in the long term it would rebrand Fortis hospitals into its own Gleneagles chain.

The Malaysian healthcare major which offered to infuse the capital at Rs 170 per share pipped rival Manipal-TPG combine’s Rs 2,100-crore offer at Rs 160 per share.

“The transaction is expected to be completed within seven business days of receipt of shareholders’ and CCI’s approval, which will be obtained concurrently with shareholders’ approval and can take approximately 60-75 days,” Fortis Healthcare said in a statement.

Commenting on the development, Fortis Healthcare Chairman Ravi Rajagopal said the IHH proposal offered a more strategically and financially compelling proposition along with simplicity and certainty. “We are now putting Fortis on a path of survival, future growth and prosperity in partnership with IHH,” he said in a conference call.

IHH Managing Director and CEO Tan See Leng said the company is willing to infuse more funds into Fortis if required.

“Currently we feel that Fortis would require about Rs 5,800-6,000 crore of funding. We are putting in Rs 4,000 crore,” he said in a separate conference call. Leng further said,”We are hoping to refinance and get some additional debt in the company and even after that if needed by Fortis, IHH remains open to exploring options for raising additional capital in consultation with other shareholders, including by way of rights issue, any other strategic solution involving capital markets or otherwise.”

The fund infusion from IHH will address Fortis’ liquidity requirements, including funding for RHT acquisition and for providing exit to private equity investors of diagnostics arm SRL.

IHH said its open offer for Fortis is expected to commence in August/September 2018, subject to regulatory approvals. Meanwhile, shares of Fortis Healthcare rose by 4%. The stock jumped 3.97% to close at Rs 147.80 on the BSE. Intra-day, it soared 5.10% to Rs 149.40.

On the NSE, shares of the company surged 3.93% to end at Rs 147.80.

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