Carlyle Considers Sale of Turkish Hospital Group

The Carlyle Group and other owners of Turkish hospitals group Medical Park are considering a sale, or initial public offering, of its business, Reuters reported. A sale could value the company at up to $600 million, Reuters said. Carlyle took a 40% stake in Medical Park in 2009. Terms of that deal were not disclosed.

(Reuters) – The owners of Turkish hospitals group Medical Park, led by private equity firm Carlyle, are considering a sale or initial public offering of the business, five people familiar with the situation said.

Carlyle has received approaches for Medical Park and could kick off a sale later this year or early next, two of the people said.

The firm has also been considering plans to sell some or all of its shares via an IPO in 2012, the three others said.

A sale could see the group valued at $500 million to $600 million, one of the people said.

“It was planned for this year, but now it seems it will take place in 2012,” another source close to the deal said.

Carlyle took a 40 percent stake in Medical Park in 2009 for an undisclosed amount alongside founders Dr Muharrem Usta and Haydar Sancak, with the money used to help build more hospitals.

The Usta and Sancak families are also likely to sell or reduce their stakes, some of the people said.

Healthcare and private hospitals are popular among private equity houses, and an auction could draw interest from firms active in the sector, including Advent International, Blackstone , Cinven and TPG .

Turkey is also attracting international investors’ interest, with one of the highest economic growth rates globally. Gross domestic product (GDP) grew 11 percent in the first quarter.

Diageo’s $2.1 billion deal for Turkish distiller Mey Icki marked a high point this year, following a strong year for acquisitions in 2010. Turkish M&A amounted to $29 billion last year, according to a report by Deloitte.

Medical Park was founded in 1995 and is a leading healthcare provider in Turkey, with 18 healthcare centres, including 13 hospitals, in the west and the north of the country and in East Anatolia. It employs some 8,000 staff, according to its website.

A sale of Medical Park could follow that of rival hospitals group Acibadem by controlling shareholders Abraaj Capital and the Aydinlar family, who have hired Merrill Lynch and Goldman Sachs to look for buyers.

Carlyle, which made the investment in Medical Park from its $500 million fund focused on investments in the Middle East and North Africa, declined to comment.

Medical Park was not immediately available for comment. (Reporting by Simon Meads and Seda Sezer; additional reporting by Evren Ballim in Istanbul; Editing by Sarah White)