Malaysia’s IHH Healthcare Weighing $1 Billion Sale of China Hospitals

By BLOOMBERG

IHH Healthcare Bhd., a Malaysian hospital group, is considering the potential sale of its China unit, in a deal that could value the chain at as much as $1 billion, according to people familiar with the situation.

The Kuala Lumpur-based company is in discussions with potential advisers on a possible sale of Parkway China, the people said, asking not to be named as the information is private.

Taikang Insurance Group and Shanghai Hongxin Medical Investment Holding Co. are also weighing participating in the sale, the people said. Taikang is a minority shareholder in the Malaysian firm’s mainland China portfolio, while Shanghai Hongxin holds a stake in one of its hospitals, according to a statement.

Deliberations are ongoing and may not lead to a transaction, the people said. A representative for IHH Healthcare declined to comment. Representatives for Taikang and Shanghai Hongxin didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

Shares in IHH rose as much as 0.6% on Tuesday in Kuala Lumpur, giving the company a market value of nearly $14 billion. The stock has climbed 21% this year.

Parkway China opened its first medical center in Shanghai in 2006, according to its website. It acquired medical and dental clinic World Link Group in 2007 and has facilities in Shanghai, Suzhou and Chengdu. Parkway provides outpatient and inpatient care for adults and children with over 40 specialties such as cardiology, psychiatry, stress management and traditional Chinese acupuncture.

Private for-profit hospitals in China have been the targets of several recent deals. Shanghai Fosun Pharmaceutical Group Co. this month acquired a 70% stake in Guangzhou Xinshi Hospital Co. for 809 million yuan ($127 million), according to a statement. DCP Capital is in talks to acquire maternity and pediatric care hospital chain Meihua Hospital for $400 million to $500 million, Bloomberg News reported in March.