NMC Health to Focus Expansion Plans in GCC, Asia-Pacific

  • NMC Health to consider tapping bond market for first time
  • NMC Health to close deal in Saudi within three to six months

NMC Health Plc, a United Arab Emirates health-care company, is exploring acquisition opportunities in the Persian Gulf and emerging markets in Asia Pacific as it seeks to expand.

NMC Health is interested in entering Qatar and Saudi Arabia, with a potential deal in the kingdom to come within the next three to six months, deputy Chief Executive Officer Prasanth Manghat said at an interview in Dubai. The company is also considering tapping the bond market for the first time, if an opportunity for a bigger acquisition arises.

"We are considering bonds," Manghat said. "It all depends on our pipeline during the year. If there are bigger acquisitions, then we may look at debt raising."

NMC Health, which is listed in London, will not look at a dual listing at the moment as "it’s too early," he said. The company expects to see an impact from lower oil prices in three to five years, but is bullish on prospects for healthcare in the Middle East as Dubai rolls out mandatory insurance for expatriates. The region also presents an opportunity to tackle lifestyle problems such as diabetes-related disorders.

"Even if the impact of oil creates some job losses or pressure on the margin, it all should offset to the value and volume” of business activity in Dubai, Manghat said.

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