UAE's NMC Health delays May staff salaries - memo

This is the second time this year that the biggest private hospital group in the UAE would be delaying staff salaries.

  
An NMC Specialty Hospital, part of the NMC Healthcare group which listed in the London Stock Exchange, is seen in the Al Nahda area of Dubai April 29, 2012. Image used for illustrative purpose.

An NMC Specialty Hospital, part of the NMC Healthcare group which listed in the London Stock Exchange, is seen in the Al Nahda area of Dubai April 29, 2012. Image used for illustrative purpose.

REUTERS/Jumana El Heloueh

UAE-based NMC Health has delayed this month's staff salaries and now expects to complete making payments by the first week of June, according to an internal memo seen by Reuters.

The troubled hospital operator, which usually pays salaries by the 25th of every month, said in an internal email to employees on Monday that this month's payroll processing will commence only on May 27.

"In the coming days, we will begin to release salaries in a phased manner just as we've done successfully in previous months," acting Chief Executive Michael Davis said in the email, adding that he does not foresee any further delay.

NMC Health was not immediately available for a comment.

This is the second time this year that the biggest private hospital group in the UAE would be delaying staff salaries. NMC had held up February salaries for weeks as it struggled to stabilise the group's finances. 

The hospital operator is currently working with its joint administrators Alvarez and Marsal on finalizing a three-year business plan in order to insure the company's financial stability and business continuity, Davis said in the email.

"We are fortunate that in spite of the difficult situation NMC is currently facing, we have continued to meet our payroll obligations each month," Davis added.

NMC came under scrutiny late last year when U.S.-based short-seller Muddy Waters criticised its financial statements. Last month, it requested the London Stock Exchange to delist its shares after they were suspended. 

(Reporting by Maria Ponnezhath in Bengaluru; Editing by Rashmi Aich) ((Maria.Ponnezhath@thomsonreuters.com; +91 8061822749;))

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