A KKR-led consortium is proposing to take over Australia-based global private hospital owner and operator Ramsay Health Care for A$20.1bn (€13.8bn).

In response to media speculation, Ramsay confirmed it had received the indicative proposal from the consortium to acquire 100% of Ramsay’s shares at A$88 each by way of a scheme of arrangement.

It said Ramsay shareholders would have the option to receive part of the consideration in unlisted scrip in the consortium holding entity.

“There is no guarantee that any further proposal will be forthcoming, that any further proposal would be recommended by the board or that a transaction will eventuate,” it said.

Ramsay group, started by Paul Ramsay with a single psychiatric hospital in Sydney in 1964, has since grown into a global operation, managing hospitals in Australia, Southeast Asia and Europe.

Industry sources estimate its Australian property portfolio to be worth around $4bn.

A spokesperson told IPE Real Assets that the group leased all of its hospitals in the UK, but its subsidiary, Elysium Healthcare, owned half of its chain of clinics. Ramsay acquired Elysium Healthcare for £775m in December last year.

Ramsay Sante is Europe’s second-largest private care provider, operating around 350 locations across five countries on the continent.

Separate to the KKR proposal, Ramsay’s 50%-owned Ramsay Sime Darby Health Care is exploring a potential sale of its business to Malaysia’s IHH HealthCare for US$1.35bn (€1.2bn). The joint venture business with Sime Darby, which operates four private hospitals in Indonesia and Malaysia and a day surgery in Hong Kong, has granted IHH a four-week exclusive due diligence period.

If the proposed KKR deal proceeds, Ramsay will be the second major Australian healthcare group to be sold. Canada’s Northwest Healthcare REIT, backed by GIC, bought Healthscope for more than A$4.4bn in 2019.

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