Fortis stake sale: Cash-strapped healthcare major shortlists four prospective buyers; appoints new chairman

New Delhi: Fortis Healthcare today said it has shortlisted four entities -- the Munjal-Burman combine, Manipal-TPG consortium, Malaysia's IHH Healthcare Berhand and Radiant Life Care to bid for the sale of its business.

In a regulatory filing, Fortis said it has received interest from various parties on 31 May, as per the timeline specified in the fresh process for bidding.

It said the company's board has decided to include the following four parties -- Hero Enterprise Investment Office and Burman Family Office (Dabur), IHH Healthcare Berhand, Radiant Life Care, Manipal-TPG consortium in the bidding process.

Earlier this week, Fortis Healthcare initiated a fresh time-bound bidding process for its sale after terminating the offer made by the Munjal-Burman combine.

As part of the process, the Fortis board decided to invite three entities that had put in binding offers -- Munjal-Burman combine, TPG-Manipal consortium, and Malaysia's IHH Healthcare Berhad -- to participate in the fresh bidding process subject to certain conditions.

The three entities were given time till today to confirm adherence to the new bidding process while other interested parties were also required to submit an Expression of Interest (EoI) by 31 May.

Representational image. Fortis Hospital official website

Representational image. Fortis Hospital official website

As per the fresh criteria, the buyers have to make a minimum investment of Rs 1,500 crore into Fortis Healthcare by way of preferential allotment apart from having a plan for funding the acquisition of RHT Health Trust (RHT) and a plan for providing exit to private equity investors of diagnostic arm SRL.

Among others, the bids should be unconditional as well as mention about the source of funds for the transaction and elaborate on the plans for retention of current management and employees.

Last week, Fortis board was reconstituted after shareholders had voted out its director Brian Tempest, who was among the four directors whose removal was sought by two institutional investors.

Three other directors -- Harpal Singh, Sabina Vaisoha and Tejinder Singh Shergill -- had resigned ahead of an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) on May 22. During the meeting, shareholders voted out Tempest.

Interestingly, these four directors were among those who had favoured the binding offer made by Munjal-Burman combine. Following the board revamp, Suvalaxmi Chakraborty, Ravi Rajagopal and Indrajit Banerjee have joined as independent directors.

New chairman appointed

The company said it has appointed Ravi Rajagopal as the chairman of the company's board with immediate effect. Rajagopal (63), a chartered accountant, is currently a non executive independent director on the Fortis board.

"The Board of Directors today, by circulation, appointed Ravi Rajagopal, non executive independent director as the chairman of the board with immediate effect," Fortis Healthcare said in a regulatory filing.

Rajagopal in his 35 years long career has worked in various entities like ITC, Ranbaxy Laboratories and Diageo. He currently serves as Chairman for JM Financial Services Singapore, as well as an independent director and chairman of the audit committee for Vedanta Resources Plc. Besides, he is a senior advisor to Joseph Hage Aaronson, a London-based litigation and arbitration law firm and Advisor to Good Relations India, which advises UK businesses on market entry and positioning strategies in India.

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Updated Date: Jun 01, 2018 16:20:09 IST