Mediclinic, Al Noor combine to create UAE's biggest private health-care provider


Mediclinic International Ltd. agreed to combine with health-care provider Al Noor Hospitals Group Plc to create the biggest private health-care provider in the United Arab Emirates, while rival NMC Health Plc said it would continue to pursue Al Noor. Al Noor is buying Johannesburg-based Mediclinic in a reverse takeover, the companies said in a statement on Wednesday. Mediclinic shareholders will get 0.625 new Al Noor shares for each held in Mediclinic, as well as an interim dividend to be paid in December. Al Noor investors can opt to get a special dividend of 3.28 pounds (AED 18.44) a share or tender their stock for 11.60 pounds (AED 65.22) apiece, which represents a 39% premium over the Oct. 1 closing price. The deal between Al Noor and Mediclinic seeks to create a hospital company with operations in the Gulf states, South Africa and Switzerland. Mediclinic is seeking to expand in countries where rising household incomes have led to growing demand for private health care. NMC, another UAE health-care company, said separately that a combination of its own operations with Al Noor offered a stronger “strategic and financial rationale for all stakeholders.” The company plans to continue its pursuit “despite the lack of meaningful engagement from the board of Al Noor,” and urged investors not to make a decision on the Mediclinic deal. Al Noor rallied 13% to 1,128 pence as of 9:18 am in London trading. Mediclinic climbed 4.5% to 122.50 rand in Johannesburg. The transaction will result in Mediclinic shareholders owning 84% to 93% of the combined business, which will be renamed Mediclinic International Plc and listed on the London Stock Exchange. The company will also have a secondary listing in Johannesburg, and may trade on the Namibian Stock Exchange. (By Janice Kew and Allison Connolly/Bloomberg)

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