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Moopen Seeks Listing in Bourse

A Dubai-based service provider is likely to seek listing in the Mumbai Stock Exchange with the possibility of a dual listing in the UAE — following a Rs10 billion (Dh8.33 million) initial public offering (IPO) in a few years, a top official said.

Dr Moopen’s (DM) Healthcare Group, one of the largest health care service providers — with operations at 75 locations in four Gulf states including four hospitals, 25 clinics and 42 pharmacies — is investing about Dh500 million in the next three years to quadruplet its operations in the GCC region, as part of its Vision 2015 plan.

By the year 2015 the group’s vision also specifies the establishment of 300 health care facilities across Middle East and India with over 10,000 health care professionals including 1,500 doctors, becoming the leading health care provider delivering quality and comprehensive health care in the region.

Run by a non-resident Indian (NRI) health care specialist, Dr Azad Moopen, DM Healthcare makes Dh80 million profits on a turnover of Dh520 million annually.

The company is 67 per cent owned by Dr Moopen’s family in which India Value Fund of US-based GW Capital holds a 28 per cent stake.

Extending reach

“The money raised through the IPO will be spent in our expansion, mostly in India where we are currently developing hospitals and a health care cluster — Med City — to extend our reach to a larger customer base,” Dr Azad Moopen, chairman of DM Healthcare, told Gulf News in an exclusive interview.

“As part of our Vision 2015, we’d like to have at least 12 hospitals, 175 pharmacies and 75 clinics across the GCC, in addition to our ambitious expansion plan in India.

“We have already invested Rs1 billion in land acquisition and infrastructure for the health care city project in Kerala, where private and institutional investors could develop health resorts, speciality hospitals and other facilities related to health care.”

Thriving

Although the financial crisis could be a curse to most economic sectors, except health care — which continues to witness growth, especially in critical areas such as cardiology — Moopen group continues to thrive in business activities.

Local investors in the GCC could be roped in the capital-raising exercise with private placement prior to the IPO, Moopen said, to allow the region’s investors to participate in his company’s expansion.

“We’ll see if we could create some opportunities for the investors here to participate in our success and expansion through some form of private placement,” he said. He said, his company plans to grow organically and through acquisition.

“Once the fund is raised, we will engage in acquisition of prime health care facilities to expand our network in India, in addition to organic growth,” he said. His group now attends about two million patient visits every year.

The group, which employs 1,000 people including 800 in the GCC, has announced the development of a medical college to groom health care professionals.

However, before going for a book-building exercise for the IPO, DM Healthcare Group is launching a major brand-building drive in which all his companies, facilities and outlets will be renamed with a new logo and brand identity. The name is being kept secret.

Planned

Moopen said he plans to spend a significant sum in the brand-building campaign.

Moopen, a medical student with a gold medal to his credit, hails from the South Indian state of Kerala.

He started his career as a physician and in 1982 joined Government College in Calicut as a lecturer.

Armed with confidence, he landed in the UAE 22 years ago to treat patients.

However, his instant success in medical practice encouraged him to invest in health care facilities, turning him into an entrepreneur. He doesn’t have time to see patients these days, something he said he missed.

“I also miss teaching. I wanted to be a medical professor. However, with my ventures, I feel I have provided services to a much wider section of society which would not have been possible as a physician only. So I am happy that way,” he said.

Dr Moopen is one of many successful Indian entrepreneurs who has made it big in the UAE and contributed to society – both in the UAE and India.

In recognition of his achievement, the Indian Government last week honoured him with Pravasi Bhartiya Samman Award – the highest honour for overseas Indians.

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