|26 November, 2019

NephroPlus eyes GCC foray backed by Investcorp equity

The capital raised will be used to expand the business in India and take the brand to new markets, starting with South East Asia

Image used for illustrative purpose. Empty hospital suit room.

Image used for illustrative purpose. Empty hospital suit room.

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MANAMA: Alternative asset manager Investcorp has invested around $45 million in a leading dialysis service provider in India, which is looking to enter GCC markets.

Founded in 2010 by Vikram Vuppala and Kamal D Shah, Nephrocare Health Services (NephroPlus) today has the largest network of dialysis centres in India, over four times larger than the second largest player.

Earlier investors in NephroPlus include Bessemer Venture Partners and IFC (the private-sector arm of the World Bank), who will continue to stay invested alongside Investcorp, with one of the earlier investors, SeaLink Capital, exiting.

The capital raised will be used to expand the business in India and take the brand to new markets, starting with South East Asia.

Mr Vuppala, who is also the chief executive of NephroPlus, said Investcorp was selected because of its strong global network in key markets where the brand now intends to focus.

“Now is the time to grow beyond India whilst also cementing our leadership position in India with continued growth momentum,” he added.

NephroPlus conducts over 140,000 dialysis sessions per month in 196 centres across more than 115 cities in India and is a leader in managing dialysis departments of hospitals via long term outsourcing contracts.

Over the last five years, it has become a strategic dialysis partner of choice for top hospitals in India including Max, Medanta, FMRI and 180 others. It also acquired DaVita’s India business late last year, with full integration completed earlier this year.

The founders now aspire to build a regional network of dialysis centres spanning India and select countries in Asia and the GCC region.

Investcorp India co-head of private equity Gaurav Sharma said: “NephroPlus meets every criteria Investcorp looks for in an investment: outstanding founders supported by a solid team, impeccable clinical quality adherence and market leadership focused on providing access to high quality services at an affordable price point across a large and growing addressable market.”

It is estimated that only 15 per cent of over 1.2 million patients in India with kidney failure were able to access dialysis last year.

With a growing incidence of diabetes and hypertension, the Indian government’s estimates suggest that over 200,000 patients are added to the patient pool every year.

In India, Investcorp targets investment opportunities across three key sectors – healthcare, financial services and mass-market consumer.

The Bahrain-based firm manages over $28 billion globally.

The private equity business of Investcorp has close to 40 years of mid-market investing experience across North America, Europe and Mena with more than $42bn of transaction value in almost 200 investments across retail, consumer products, technology, business services and industrials.

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