Mediclinic Seeks London Listing Through Al Noor Hospitals Tieup

  • South African company confirms talks with Al Noor of U.A.E.
  • Mediclinic follows Steinhoff in move to international listing

Mediclinic International Ltd., in talks with London-traded health-care provider Al Noor Hospitals Group Plc about a tie-up, said the potential deal would take the form of a reverse takeover of the smaller, United Arab Emirates company to gain a listing in the U.K. capital.

“The combined business would benefit from a premium listing on the London Stock Exchange” as well as on the Johannesburg bourse, Stellenbosch, South Africa-based Mediclinic said in a statement on Tuesday. “The board believes that this will provide incremental benefits to Mediclinic through increased liquidity and a reduction in cost of capital.”

South Africa’s biggest private hospital owner would be the second Johannesburg stock to seek an additional, international listing this year. Steinhoff International Holdings Ltd., the furniture chain which gets more than half its sales from Europe, plans to list on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange later this year to increase access to investors on the continent. Al Noor would issue new shares to Mediclinic investors to facilitate the reverse takeover, the South African company said.

Mediclinic shares gained as much as 3 percent to 120.45 rand in Johannesburg on Tuesday, the most since May 6, and traded 0.9 percent higher at 118 rand at 1:12 p.m. local time. That values the company at about 116 billion rand ($8.5 billion). Al Noor gained 3.9 percent in London, valuing the company at 1.1 billion pounds ($1.7 billion). The stock has increased for five consecutive days.

If the deal is completed, it would create the biggest private health-care provider in the U.A.E., with operations in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, Mediclinic said. That would complement the company’s existing operations in Switzerland, Southern Africa and the U.K. Mediclinic is seeking to expand in countries where rising household incomes have led to growing demand for private health care.  

“Abu Dhabi has been on Mediclinic’s radar for some time,” Andre Bekker, an analyst at Avior Capital Markets in Johannesburg, said by phone on Monday. “Al Noor is a good fit both from a geographic footprint and because of the specialized services they offer.”

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