New Delhi: Manipal Hospitals aims to keep boosting its presence across the country through a mix of organic and inorganic expansions, its MD & CEO Dilip Jose said on Tuesday, a day after the hospital chain announced the purchase of a majority stake in the Kolkata-based healthcare group Medica Synergie.

In an interaction with Mint, Jose emphasized that Manipal Hospitals’ expansion would be gradual, and the strategy is not dictated by any specific timelines or capacity.

“We don’t have any bed capacity targets nor does any set of timelines bind us. We as a hospital chain are looking to expand through a mix of greenfield and brownfield. While greenfields are a little easier to plan, brownfields will be opportunistic depending on what becomes available,” Jose added. “It’s a fragmented sector there is a lot of opportunity to grow and consolidate and, so, we just want to continue our growth momentum.”

He said that the hospital chain plans to commence construction on a plot of land, owned by it, in Kolkata over the next year. The Bengaluru-based group is keen to augment its footprint in key regions such as Kerala, Hyderabad, Vizag, Pune, and Delhi NCR.

“We are looking at greenfield options in Delhi NCR and Pune. We also have a plot of land in Rajarhat, Kolkata, where we are thinking of launching construction for a new hospital over the next one year. We are also planning to expand in Siliguri, part of the Medica association we have. Post Raipur, we will also look at other parts of Odisha. While Kerala and Hyderabad remain geographies of great interest to us, brownfield remains opportunistic,” Jose added.

Manipal Hospitals will use a mix of equity and debt to finance its expansion. The group also hasn’t started any work on plans for an initial public offer (IPO). “We know we have large expansion plans, but we want to be conservative with our borrowing while ensuring that funding does not get in the way. We know we have an option of an IPO, but we haven’t really started working on that.”

Earlier, Temasek Holdings, the investment arm of the Singapore government, had reduced its stake to 51% in Manipal Health Enterprises (MHE) by selling up to 8% stake in the company to a clutch of investors-Mubadala Investment Company, Novo Holdings, and the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS).

Late on Monday, the hospital chain announced the acquisition of an 87% stake in Medica Synergie in a deal that industry sources said is worth an estimated 1,400 crore. Although Jose didn’t confirm the deal size, he said the acquisition was entirely funded through internal accruals. The latest acquisition will see the Manipal Hospitals increase its bed count from 9,500 currently to more than 10,500, making it the largest healthcare group in the country, it had said in a statement. Earlier, Apollo Hospitals was the biggest hospital chain in the country with around 10,103 owned and operated beds as of 31 March 2024.

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Published: 30 Apr 2024, 05:25 PM IST