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MSC enters new business sector with £3.7bn acquisition of Mediclinic

MSC enters new business sector with £3.7bn acquisition of Mediclinic




Continued Following Maersk's acquisition of Unilabs last year, MSC, the world's largest container liner company by capacity, is also entering a new business segment with the acquisition of healthcare company Mediclinic International, which operates numerous high-end private hospitals in multiple countries.


London-listed private hospital group Mediclinic has accepted a £3.7 billion takeover offer from a consortium of its largest shareholders and the world's largest container shipping group. Mediclinic agreed to the £3.7bn bid in August after rejecting a £3.4bn bid from the same consortium in June.


Diego Aponte, president of MSC Group, said: "MSC is ideally placed to provide long-term capital, as well as our insight and experience in running a global business, to support the strategic ambitions of the Mediclinic management team" but declined to elaborate on why it would expand into healthcare.


Founded in South Africa in 1984, Mediclinic is today a private healthcare company with operations in Switzerland, Namibia and the United Arab Emirates.


Worldwide, the new deal by the Aponte family, the owners of MSC, follows a trend of global giants entering the healthcare space. In the last year, the Maersk family, which owns a stake in AP Moller-Maersk, announced its foray into healthcare by acquiring Unilabs, a maker of Covid-19 tests and diagnostics company. Belgian investor Groupe Bruxelles Lambert has acquired Europe's largest imaging center, Affidea. Ping An of China holds the Peking University Medical Industry Group, including taking over the Peking University International Hospital and so on.


Now that shipping companies are holding large sums of cash, the wave of grabbing core resources such as shopping logistics and medical care will continue to accelerate. Mærsk could end 2022 with at least $30 billion in cash, and while smaller rival Hapag-Lloyd's latest quarterly report disclosed holding $10 billion in cash and cash equivalents, it is conceivable that MSC also has at least $20 billion now - $25 billion minimum firepower.


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