Picture: 123RF/Anna Ivanova
Picture: 123RF/Anna Ivanova

Nairobi — Cerba HealthCare, the French owner of a global network of medical laboratories, is expanding in Africa by buying some of Lancet Laboratories’ operations for as much as 12.5 billion Kenyan shillings ($123m), said a person familiar with the matter.

Paris-based Cerba will hold a 51% stake in a joint venture with the SA company that will operate in 11 African countries, said the person who asked not to be identified because the information is not public.

Cerba announced on Thursday it started operations in Africa after forming a joint venture known as Cerba Lancet Africa with Lancet, without providing details about the deal. The agreement excludes Lancet’s biggest operations in SA, it said in a statement on its website.

Cerba Lancet plans to expand into several other African markets by partnering with local businesses, the company said in an e-mailed response to questions. The growth will be funded jointly by the two companies and bank financing, it said.

Lancet did not immediately respond to an e-mailed request for comment.

The joint venture plans to begin operations in five French-speaking sub-Saharan African countries and Ethiopia by 2024, two people with knowledge of matter said.

Cerba is owned by Public Sector Pension Investment Board, a Canadian pension fund manager, and Zurich-based investment-management firm Partners Group Holding.