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Business deals

Malaysia's IHH announces acquisition of Indian health care group

Deal will bolster hospital operator's foothold in a key Asian market

IHH Healthcare operates in nine countries across Asia.   © Reuters

KUALA LUMPUR -- IHH Healthcare has entered into a deal worth 40 billion rupees ($585 million) with Fortis Healthcare on Friday, paving the way for acquisition of India's second-largest hospital group.

The move strengthens the presence of the upscale Malaysia-controlled hospital operator in one of its four key Asian markets.

The deal, at 170 rupees per share, entails subscription of new shares representing 31.1% of Fortis, immediately injecting badly needed funds into the cash-strapped Indian group. It also triggers a mandatory offer to purchase up to 26% additional stake in Fortis for at least 170 rupees per share, IHH said in a filing to the stock exchange.

IHH beat another challenger led by Manipal Healthcare Enterprises, which offered 160 rupees per share.

India is one of the four areas that IHH considers a "home market," apart from Malaysia, Singapore and Turkey. The health care group -- Asia's largest by market capitalization -- runs over 10,000 beds in 49 hospitals across nine countries in the region.

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