Netcare’s ailing UK business at crossroads
The private hospital group is yet to find a buyer for its 57% stake in General Healthcare Group
Analysts say private hospital group Netcare will have to compromise on price or walk away from its UK business with nothing, after it emerged on Monday that it has yet to find a buyer for its 57% stake in General Healthcare Group (GHG). Netcare paid £219m for its share of GHG in 2006. Netcare said in March it would exit the UK after failing to negotiate a better rental deal for its hospitals, which had become an increasing drain on profit. Netcare has discontinued its UK business, making it a purely South African player. After Netcare’s acquisition of GHG, it was restructured into an operating company called BMI Healthcare and a series of property companies called PropCo that held some of the hospital properties and rented them to BMI. The property group has debt of more than £1.5bn. Despite interest from several parties, Netcare had yet to find a buyer for its 57% stake in BMI and its 57% stake in GHG PropCo 2, CEO Richard Friedland said on Monday as the group reported its interim ...