Hiranandani Constructions, promoted by billionaire Niranjan Hiranandani, is planning to set up a chain of hospitals in the country. The total investment in these projects could be around INR 500 crore. The company plans to become a major healthcare player in the next five years, sources said. The real estate major is planning to set up new hospitals at its upcoming townships in Chennai, Pune, Nasik, Panvel and Kolkata among others. The hospitals, all with over a 100-bed capacity, will be called Hiranandani Hospitals. According to market sources, the Hiranandanis are planning to take on corporate hospital chains like Wockhardt, Apollo and Fortis. However, the company’s managing director, Niranjan Hiranandani, said they are still uating whether to set up corporate hospitals or to position them as charitable ones. “Our idea is to set up five hospitals at our townships in the next five years,” Hiranandani said. The company has also tied up with Fortis group: According to the deal, Hiranandani will build hospitals for the group. Fortis, to mark its entry in Mumbai, took over the group’s hospital in Vashi a few months ago. Dr L H Hiranandani hospital, set up by the group at Hiranandani’s Powai township, is currently undergoing expansion, to double its capacity from the existing 135 beds to over 230 beds. The expansion will involve investments between INR 75- 100 crore, sources said. Sources also said the success of the Powai hospital prompted the group to consider a nation-wide presence. The Hiranandanis also have a hospital in Thane. Hiranandani said the company would fund the hospitals with internal accruals and debt. “If we decide to make the chain corporate, we can also look at capital markets,” he said. Hiranandani also said the company was planning to launch its Haiko supermarkets at upcoming townships. “All these amenities were initially planned as value-adds. But now they constitute an integral part of our expansion plans,” he said. Hiranandani has two townships in Powai and Thane, and is building townships in Panvel, in Mumbai. Many of the healthcare majors in the country have chalked out expansion plans for their hospital chains. Hyderabad-based Apollo Hospitals currently owns and manages over 41 hospitals in India, and is the largest private sector healthcare provider in Asia. Fortis Healthcare, which has 13 hospitals in North India, is planning to set up over 40 hospitals by 2010. Wockhardt Hospitals operates 12 hospitals in Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Nagpur, Surat and Rajkot, and is in the process of setting up more hospitals across the country. Hiranandani Construction had listed its real estate investment company Hirco on the Alternative Investment Market (AIM) in 2006.