Columbia Asia Group ups stake in M’sian unit

> Now owns 99.12% af­ter buy­ing EPF’s 29.72% share

The Sun (Malaysia) - - MEDIA & MARKETING - BY WAN ILAIKA MOHD ZAKARIA

PETALING JAYA: Columbia Asia Group now owns 99.12% of sub­sidiary Columbia Asia Sdn Bhd (CASB) af­ter it com­pleted the pur­chase of the Em­ploy­ees Prov­i­dent Fund’s 29.72% in­ter­est re­cently.

Be­fore that, the group’s stake stood at 69.4%.

Columbia Asia Group did not dis­close the pur­chase price, not­ing that the “trans­ac­tion be­tween the two par­ties is un­der a mu­tual con­fi­den­tial­ity”.

“There is no change in the strat­egy. We have many ex­cit­ing plans in the works to grow Columbia Asia Group’s of­fer­ings and bring af­ford­able, qual­ity health­care to more peo­ple across Asia,” it told Sun­Biz in an email re­sponse yes­ter­day.

“We will in­vest not just in ad­di­tional hos­pi­tal fa­cil­i­ties, but also add to sub­spe­cial­ity ca­pa­bil­i­ties within our ex­ist­ing hos­pi­tals. We will also lever­age on dig­i­tal tech­nolo­gies to make our ser­vices even more ac­ces­si­ble, ef­fi­cient and cost-ef­fec­tive to our pa­tients,” it added.

Mean­while, asked on the rea­son for the dis­posal of its stake, the EPF said it had taken the op­por­tu­nity to exit and take profit on its in­vest­ment when Columbia Asia Group ex­pressed in­ter­est to pur­chase its share in CASB.

The pen­sion fund added that its in­vest­ment in CASB was done through its pri­vate eq­uity divi­sion and its pri­vate eq­uity strat­egy is to se­cure prof­its from its in­vest­ments, mainly through cap­i­tal gain. The pro­ceeds from the stake dis­posal would be used for fu­ture in­vest­ments, the EPF added.

CASB, which owns Columbia Asia’s hos­pi­tals in Malaysia and In­done­sia, is a sub­sidiary of Columbia Asia Group un­der Columbia Asia Health­care Sdn Bhd. It fo­cuses on the South­east Asian mar­ket, with its main op­er­a­tions in Malaysia.

Columbia Asia Health­care is 100% owned by US-based fund In­ter­na­tional Columbia US, LLC, which is owned by more than 150 pri­vate eq­uity com­pa­nies, fund man­age­ment or­gan­i­sa­tions and in­di­vid­ual in­vestors.

The group has 12 med­i­cal fa­cil­i­ties in Malaysia, 12 in In­dia, three in Viet­nam, three in In­done­sia and one in Kenya.

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