IHH pips rivals with Rs 160 per share Fortis bid

Fortis Healthcare

Fortis Healthcare

The race to acquire Fortis Healthcare Ltd is heating up with the announcement that the hospital chain has received an unsolicited binding offer from Malaysia's IHH Healthcare Berhad - the third bidder to have entered the fray to buy Fortis.

Manipal Hospitals Enterprises Private Ltd on Tuesday raised its offer to Fortis Healthcare's hospital business by about a fifth in an attempt to win over minority shareholders opposed to the deal.

IHH, in a letter dated April 11 made public by Fortis on Friday, said it was offering to buy Fortis due to the "inability of the statutory auditors of (Fortis) to opine on its financial position as at December 31, 2017 and regulatory investigations that are now underway".

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Its proposal "can be implemented in a fairly short period of time and will allow the company to focus on stabilising operations and on growth", they said.

Munjals and Burmans have offered higher of Rs 156 per share or price determined by SEBI's ICDR rules.

Sunil Munjal, the chairman of Hero Enterprise, Anand Burman, the chairman of Dabur Group and Mohit Burman, the managing director of Elephant Capital LLP and director on Dabur's board, have said this infusion will help in addressing urgent financial needs of the company. The proposal, which is subject to certain conditions, includes an immediate investment of 5 billion rupees and 7.5 billion rupees after diligence is completed within three weeks.

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Hero Enterprise Investment Office and the Burman Family Office have made a binding offer to invest a total of 12.5 billion rupees (S$251.4 million) through a preferential share allotment, according to a Fortis exchange filing on Thursday. Intra-day, the stock rose by 4.63 per cent to Rs 154.50. Brothers Malvinder Singh and Shivinder Singh have resigned from the company and have lost control of their shareholding due to mounting debt.

The Kuala Lumpur-based company told the Fortis board it wants to work with them on a friendly offer, according to one of the people.

Both Hero group and Dabur India which are now having three per cent stake in Fortis Healthcare intend to invest Rs 1,250 crore in two tranches.

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