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Singapore’s GIC nears deal for stake in healthcare business of Malaysia’s Sunway, report says

GIC has been an active investor in the healthcare sector in recent years, including in China and the Philippines
By Goh Thean Eu   
June 22, 2021

Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC Pte Ltd is nearing a deal to buy a stake in Malaysian conglomerate Sunway Group’s healthcare business, according to a report in The Edge Weekly.

Sunway is “close to conclusion” to sell a “strategic stake” of between 20%-25% in its healthcare business as early as this week, the Malaysian business weekly says in the June 19 report, citing two unnamed sources.

Last September, Sunway said in a filing to the Malaysian stock exchange that it has appointed Maybank Investment Bank to “explore strategic investment options for its healthcare portfolio, in line with the company’s objective to enhance shareholder value”. Sunway has businesses in property development, mall operation, theme parks, healthcare, and education, among other things.

GIC has been an active investor in the healthcare sector in recent years, including in China and the Philippines.

Three years ago, the wealth fund led a US$260 million round of fundraising in CStone, a biopharmaceutical company based in Suzhou, China.

In 2019, the fund teamed up with private equity firm KKR to acquire a 6.25% stake in the Philippines’ largest private hospital operator, Metro Pacific Hospitals.

And last September, it joined a consortium led by Hillhouse Capital Group to invest $418 million in I-Mab, a Nasdaq-listed clinical stage biopharmaceutical company in Shanghai.

GIC doesn’t publicly disclose its asset data. The Sovereign Wealth Centre estimates the wealth fund had around $453 billion of assets as of March 2020.