Netcare group to list in UK
Cape Town - Netcare's UK hospital subsidiary is expected to list on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) in 2010.
Netcare owns 50.1% of the British General Healthcare Group (GHG).
The South African private hospital group entered the UK market three years ago, with three partners in GHG - Apax Partners Worldwide, London & Regional Properties and Brockton Capital.
According to Netcare CEO Dr Richard Friedland, the partners always had a short-term horizon for their stake, but Netcare intended it as a long-term investment.
From the outset the partners therefore had the right to sell their GHG stake after three years, Friedland explains. Those three years expired in May 2009.
One of the ways in which the sale can take place is through a listing on the LSE, which is being planned.
Netcare will retain controlling interest in the company.
According to analysts, this development is positive for Netcare's shareholders because it will give the company a stronger foothold offshore, as well as more opportunities for expansion in the rest of Europe.
Friedland cautions, however, that the partners could decide at any point not to proceed with the GHG listing if the UK market remains too volatile.
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