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Australia’s Icon Group expects majority owner Quadrant to seek IPO by mid-2017: Reuters

Australian cancer treatment provider Icon Group said it expects its biggest investor, private equity firm Quadrant, to sell its 55 percent stake in an initial public offering by mid-2017, and said Icon is now worth A$1 billion ($745 million) in total.

After rapid development in Australia’s healthcare business since Sydney-based Quadrant first invested in 2014, Icon expects revenue of A$700 million in 2017, according to officials in New Zealand on Friday to attend the announcement of a planned treatment center.

Quadrant was now looking to exit one of Australia’s biggest cancer care firms, Icon Chief Executive Officer Mark Middleton told Reuters, and the IPO timing was “looking (likely) within the next 12 months”.

The private equity firm didn’t respond to requests for comment.

Icon, Australia’s largest chemotherapy provider and among the largest radiation therapy providers, has six radiation centers in development in addition to its current 10 sites, but is expecting growth to slow in Australia.

Australia’s healthcare sector, which encompassed both public and private providers, was worth around A$116 billion in 2016, according to market research firm Ibis World, and had been growing at around 4 percent a year for the past five years.

“I think with the projects that we have under way, there’s not enormous growth left in Australia for us,” said Middleton. Icon has increasingly been casting its eye overseas to markets where there is a dearth of private cancer treatment.

In Asia, it acquired Singapore Oncology Consultants in the city-state in April, and in June it struck a deal with Shanghai-based Yibai Health care to provide radiation treatment plans for 50 clinics across China.

The company was also looking at other options to expand in Vietnam and Myanmar, where an emerging healthcare industry and growing middle class willing to pay for healthcare had caught its eye, Middleton said.

On Friday Icon said it had signed a joint venture agreement with Acurity Health Group for a cancer treatment center in New Zealand.

The project would cost around A$20 million and create the first private cancer care center in the country’s capital, Wellington, which could treat up to 900 new cases a year.