April 8, 2014 12:24 am JST

Malaysia's IHH Healthcare continues its climb

ASUKA KONDO, NQN staff writer

SINGAPORE -- IHH Healthcare of Malaysia, Asia's largest hospital operator, edged up Monday despite the news that it might not go through with the anticipated acquisition of an Australian health care company.

     Malaysian shares hovered around last week's close before substantial buying late in the day led big-name stocks in such areas as finance, electric power and telecommunications to close up. The composite index ended the day at the highest level since the end of last year.

     IHH added slightly to previous gains to close at 3.83 ringgit ($1.17) -- up 0.03 ringgit, or 0.78%.

     Some media reported that the company has dropped plans to buy Australian health care corporation Healthscope, but there was scant indication of selling by disappointed investors.

     Market watchers had anticipated IHH investing up to 5 billion Australian dollars ($4.69 billion) in Healthscope. But TPG Capital Partners and Carlyle Group, which own the Australian company, are apparently inclined to stage an exit through an initial public offering.

     IHH is majority-owned by a Malaysian sovereign wealth fund and partly owned by Japanese trading house Mitsui & Co. The hospital company is expanding health care services in places like Asia and the Middle East while actively making acquisitions.