Motilal Oswal PE fund invests in Mankind Pharma’s diagnostics venture
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Homegrown Motilal Oswal Private Equity (MOPE) on Friday said it will invest up to Rs 194.4 crore (around $25 million) through its fourth fund in Mankind Pharma’s diagnostics venture, Pathkind Labs.

Pathkind Labs said that the investment from MOPE’s IBEF IV will be used to further build the firm’s diagnostics capabilities and capacities, as well as to boost services by leveraging digitization, AI and ML tools.

MOPE, a subsidiary of Motilal Oswal Financial Services Limited, is a diversified financial services group with businesses in securities, asset management, housing finance, private equity and investment banking.

Founded in 2016, Pathkind is said to be one of India’s fastest growing diagnostics services chains. The firm claims to offer a portfolio of over 4,000 tests across biochemistry, hematology, serology, histopathology and molecular biology, among others.

“We believe that the diagnostics industry in India is poised to grow to $30 billion over the next 8-10 years, driven primarily by increasing penetration and shift towards organized diagnostics chains.

Pathkind, with its focus on providing quality testing, widespread network, extensive doctor coverage, strong management team and parentage and with our investment, is well poised to be a leading diagnostics franchise in India,” said Vishal Tulsyan, MD and CEO of MOPE.

“Both the organisations (MOPE and Pathkind) share a common vision to make superior quality diagnostics services accessible to the masses at an affordable price. Setting up labs run by qualified MD pathologist doctors, skilled technicians is our top priority,” said Sanjeev Vashishta, Promoter, MD and CEO of Pathkind Diagnostics.   

Vashishta had previously worked with SRL Diagnostics Ltd in 2017 to spearhead Pathkind Labs.   

Khaitan & Co, Wadia Ghandy & Co, and Ray Legal were the legal advisers to the transaction.  

The pursuit of diagnostics assets by private equity firms indicates sustained investor interest in this space in the country, especially after the onset of the pandemic. A bunch of diagnostics companies in India have matured over the years with significant private equity funding and some have already hit the public markets.   

Dr Lal PathLabs became the first diagnostics firm to float in late 2015. Thyrocare Technologies and Metropolis Healthcare followed suit. Last year, private equity-backed regional diagnostics firms, Krsnaa Diagnostics and Vijaya Diagnostic also went public.

Last month, International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private investment arm of World Bank, has committed at least $35 million in homegrown Motilal Oswal Private Equity's (MOPE) fourth fund, which is sized at over $588 million (Rs 4,500 crore).

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