Corporate Updates

Dabur promoters’ PE fund to invest in Wellspring Healthcare chain

Dabur

Asian Healthcare Fund (AHF), a private equity firm floated by Dabur Group chairman Anand Burman and former Dabur Pharma CEO Ajay Kumar Vij, is close to investing in Wellspring Healthcare, which operates a regional chain of primary healthcare clinics under the brand name Healthspring community medical centers in western India.

This comes two months after AHF committed an investment of around Rs 40-50 crore in Mydentist, a regional dental care chain of 40 clinics with a focus on western India. This would be the second investment of the PE fund after it was established in 2011.

While ET couldn’t verify the amount of investment, the PE fund is likely to pump in money into the primary healthcare chain in a phased manner, in at least two tranches.

Without disclosing the amount, Ajay Vij, CEO of AHF, confirmed the plan to ET, adding, “We are impressed with Healthspring’s vision to create a patient-centric primary healthcare platform that would offer services of family doctor in a modern setting and plan an investment in the venture.”

Healthspring, promoted by doctor Gautam Sen and his entrepreneur son Kaushik Sen, currently runs seven healthcare centres in Mumbai and plans to use the funds it is raising to scale up its footprint in other select geographies.

In 2010, the Burmans invested in a radiology business operated by Diwan Chand Medical Services. But this was made in their personal capacity and hadn’t been routed through the PE firm, sources told ET.

Asian Healthcare Fund was floated after German firm FreseniusBSE -0.24 % Kabi acquired Dabur Pharma. Besides the Burmans, AHF also has several external investors. It started with a mandate of making investments between $5 million and $20 million in healthcare ventures such as diagnostics, clinics, pathology labs, pharmaceutical and medical devices manufacturers.

Private equity investments in the Indian healthcare space crossed $520.36 million in 2012. This marked a four-fold annual jump, when pitted against comparable investments in 2011, which stood at $137.41 million, according to a Thomson Reuters estimate. This jump is at a time PE investments plunged by a substantial 17.5% to $3.26 billion from $3.95 billion during the corresponding period, the same data showed.

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