Indian private equity firm Aureos Capital India has made an investment of $10 million in Central India-based BSR Super Speciality Hospitals Ltd (BSR). The company owns and operates six diagnostic centres and two major hospitals across five cities in Central India, including a 175-bed tertiary hospital (BSR Super Specialty Hospital, Bhilai) and the first specialist cancer hospital (BSR Cancer Hospital) in the state of Chattisgarh.

BSR Super Specialty Hospital is the first tertiary care hospital in the region while BSR Cancer Hospital is the first specialist private sector cancer hospital in Chattisgarh state.

Dr. M K Khanduja-owned BSR Hospitals also owns Bhilai Scan and Research Limited (BSRL), who operates imaging diagnostics centres, fully equipped with radiology and pathology services, across Central India and intends to start nine new imaging diagnostic centres and several new hospitals in the region, including a 150-bed multispecialty hospital in Nagpur and a hospital in Rajnandgaon.

The company also recently completed a deal with the Medica Synergie Group in Kolkata, a 500-bed hospital, to manage their entire radiology department, which will be the first time that the group will operate a diagnostic centre on behalf of another organisation.

BSR Hospitals, founded in 1993 by Dr. M K Khanduja, a leading Paediatrician in Bhilai, specialise in cardiology, cardio thoracic, oncology, neurology, orthopedic, nephrology, pediatrics, urology, gastroenterology and emergency care. It also owns and operates Apollo BSR Hospital, Bhilai, in association with Apollo Hospitals Enterprises Ltd. Chennai, the largest chain of healthcare providers in India.

“The growth possibilities of BSR are very high as it serves relatively deprived areas where not much quality health service is available,” G.V. Kumar, Partner, Aureos, which manages a $100-m fund, told VCCircle while refusing to divulge the stake holding details of the deal. “We have invested for a minority stake,” he said.

Primary reason is that the sector is health care, which is a fast growing one and the hospitals are in relatively deprived areas, Kumar said, while pointing out the quality of health services provided by BSR.

The healthcare sector in the underserved region of Central India is chronically under-funded, which has created a huge demand for private investment in the Indian hospital industry, Kumar added.

Statistics reveal that there are 3,316 people to every hospital bed in Central India. The government aims to reduce this to one for every 800 people, suggesting that private sector investment will need to play a major role in increasing hospital capacity. According to Kumar, BSR’s growth strategy does not include any acquisitions at this point of time.

The group is expanding its operations to similar deprived areas like Western Maharashtra where there are no quality healthcare facilities available. All the hospital projects at this point of time are brownfield,” he said.

RiverBridge Investment Advisors Pvt. Ltd was the banker for the transaction.

Aureos India, which is a part of $1.2 billion Aureos Capital, recently exited its 34% stakeholding from Accutest Research Laboratories, Mumbai-based leading contract research organisation (CRO). It has also invested $10 million in Continental Warehousing Corp. (Nhava Sheva) Ltd. (air freight & logistics), and $7 million in Hindustan Vacuum Glass Ltd. (construction & engineering). Its other investments include HHV Solar Technologies Pvt. Ltd. (electric utilities) and Ordyn Technologies Pvt. Ltd. (communications equipment).

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