China's Fosun becomes a competitor in the race for Fortis

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Fortis Healthcare Limited on Tuesday informed the market regulator that it has received an unsolicited non-binding expression of interest from China's Fosun Health Holdings, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Fosun International Limited.

As per the offer, it would immediately infuse Rs 100 crore into the Indian hospital chain within the next 45 days, thereafter, subject to due diligence during the next three weeks it is ready to invest at at Rs 156 per share.

The Hong Kong-listed Fosun has now joined the list of interested parties that include TPG-Manipal consortium, Malaysia's IHH healthcare and Munjal-Burman family are in fray to take control of the hospital chain Fortis Healthcare, India's second largest healthcare provider.

IHH, Asia's most valuable hospital operator, sent a letter to Fortis's board Monday with the due diligence request following its cash purchase proposal last week valuing the company at as much as $1.3 billion, the people said.

Fortis Healthcare said it has received an unsolicited non-binding offer from Chinese firm Fosun Health Holdings, making it the fourth bidder for the beleaguered firm.

Fosun, having assets worth over $75 billion, is already an investor in India's Gland Pharma, reported The Economic Times, adding it has invested over $1 billion in various companies across India.

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Fortis Healthcare confirmed a report that the company had availed of a three-year loan of Rs 160 cr, but denied that it was done to avoid bankruptcy.

"We are aware of the company's near-term cash requirements, strategic plans for consolidation of its real estate assets, and various alternative proposals put forth to the board's consideration", Fosun said in the letter.

Fosun had indicated that it could immediately provide ₹100 crore to Fortis to take care of its immediate cash needs within the next 45 days, including the option of immediately subscribing to a debt instrument.

Malaysia's IHH Healthcare on Tuesday said Fortis Healthcare refused to accept its offer to acquire the company citing binding agreements with Manipal Health Enterprises.

Fortis has also received a combined investment offer of Rs 1,250 crore from Hero Enterprise Investment and the Burman Family Office.

This fresh turn comes just a day before the board of directors of Fortis meet to decide on the bids (i.e. April 19).

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