Investcorp sells stake in India's second-largest eye hospital chain

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Investcorp, Bahrain's alternative asset manager that counts Mubadala Investment Company as its biggest shareholder, has sold its stake in ASG Eye Hospital, the second-largest eye care hospital chain in India, as it continues to realise investment gains on mature assets and explore new investment opportunities.

The sale of Investcorp's shareholding to General Atlantic and Kedaara Capital is part of a growth capital funding round of 15 billion India rupees ($188 million), the company said in a statement on Monday. It did not give financial details of the transaction or the size of the stake sold.

The financing round is India’s biggest private equity funding in the eye care sector and one of the largest private equity transactions in the single speciality healthcare industry in the country, the company said.

Investcorp, which acquired the ASG stake in 2017, helped the hospital's operator drive expansion and boost revenue growth.

During the investment period, ASG successfully implemented its domestic expansion strategy, entering new and underserved markets in India. The number of hospitals operated by ASG in the country has more than doubled and revenue has tripled since Investcorp’s investment.

Earlier this year, ASG won the bid to acquire Vasan Eye, an eye care hospital chain that will expand ASG’s footprint in South India.

“Since our initial investment, the company has gone from strength to strength,” Mohammed Al Sada, head of Bahrain and Kuwait for Investcorp’s Private Wealth, said.

“This was our first investment in the healthcare sector in India and our private equity team in India will continue to identify opportunities in growing founder-led companies with the potential to create value for our clients.”

Investcorp is an active investor in mid-market companies across consumption-linked sectors and real estate-focused businesses in India, Asia’s third-largest economy.

In the private equity space, Investcorp is targeting opportunities in the healthcare, software and business services, financial services and consumer sectors.

Its investments over the last four years include Wingreens, V-Ensure, Intergrow Brands,, Freshtohome, Zolo, InCred, Citykart, NephroPlus, Unilog, XpressBees and Safari Industries.

Established more than four decades ago, Investcorp has grown to become one of the leading alternative asset management companies in the region. The company went on an acquisition spree during the Covid-19 pandemic to capitalise on lower asset valuations and is bullish on the growth prospects for its portfolio.

Alternative asset managers invest outside public markets, including in private equity, private credit, venture capital, hedge funds, commodities, real estate and infrastructure.

Investcorp said it had $40.4bn in total assets under management as of December 31, including assets managed by third-party managers.

The company aims to more than double its assets under management to $100bn in seven years’ time, from $37.6bn as of June 2021, ‏‏‏‏its executive chairman Mohammed Alardhi told Bloomberg in September.

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