Fosun Raises Stakes With Bid for Indian Hospital Chain
Earlier bidders for cash-strapped Indian hospital chain Fortis Healthcare Ltd. upped their offers on Thursday after Chinese conglomerate Fosun International Ltd. emerged as a fourth potential suitor.
India’s Munjal-Burman families, which are shareholders of Fortis, on Thursday raised their offer, while another candidate, Malaysia’s IHH Healthcare Bhd., sent in a “supplemental proposal,” Fortis said in two separate filings to the National Stock Exchange of India.
Fosun’s subsidiary Fosun Healthcare Ltd. sent an unsolicited nonbinding expression of interest to buy no more than 25% of Fortis shares for up to $350 million, according to a Fortis filing on Wednesday.
Fortis Indian rival Manipal Health Enterprises is also a bidder, but hasn’t made any updates.
The offer of the Chinese company is subject to due diligence to be completed within three weeks, while Bloomberg reported that Sunil Munjal from the Munjal-Burman family alliance said they were willing to make the investment without any due diligence.
The Fortis board is scheduled to meet on Thursday to consider all options, the company said in a filing.
Fortis is one of India’s top three hospital chains, operating in India, Dubai, Mauritius and Sri Lanka, with 45 healthcare facilities and 314 diagnostic centers.
But it has struggled lately with scandals and cash shortages. Siblings Malvinder and Shivinder Singh, founders of Fortis, resigned after allegations that they took company funds without board approval, with “lenders invoking pledges on the shares mortgaged to them, they have also lost control,” Bloomberg reported.
“Fosun has sufficient funds for the transaction without requiring any external financing,” the company said in the offer.
Fosun entered India through a record $1.1-billion takeover of the majority stake in local injectables manufacturer Gland Pharma. Other assets of the Chinese company include healthcare provider United Family Hospitals and Israeli laser-technology developer Sisram Medical.
“Fosun has an in-depth understanding within the global healthcare service space from both investment and strategic perspectives, and is especially committed to the Indian healthcare sector, with over $1 billion invested to date,” the company said.
Contact reporter Coco Feng (email@example.com)
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