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13/11/2017

Markets in Asia were generally lower as traders cashed in their positions after the recent bull run. “We head into the new week with increasing focus from market participants around a number of red flags that suggest an increased prospect of a tactical pullback in risk assets,” said Chris Weston, market analyst for g+ in Melbourne, this morning. The Nikkei was down 0.70% at lunchtime with the ASX also lower. The regional exception was China. Single’s Day was a hit again this year with a record US$25 billion spent on Saturday. The world’s largest shopping event is taken as a proxy for consumer sentiment in the country and, beating last year’s figures by 39%, little surprise that the Shanghai Composite was up 0.30% with the Hang Seng snapping at its heels and up 0.22%.
 
The flow of quarterly results continues. The figures are mostly in for the listed hospital operators in Thailand and the news is good. After a quiet second quarter the biggest operators in Q3 have seen profits grow in the high single figures, while it has been a case of double digit growth for the smaller players.
 
In Singapore, Q&M Dental Group, which operates the largest network of private dental outlets in Singapore, has reported a 28% rise in Q3 profits to S$3.6 million (US$2.7 million) on revenues that fell 5% to S$27.6 million. The decrease of S$1.4 million was mainly due to the deconsolidation of Aoxin Q&M Dental Group from a subsidiary to an associate in April. Cordlife Group, a healthcare company which provides cord blood and cord lining banking services, has returned to profitability with S$649,000 profits for the first quarter of the year on revenues that rose 13.2% to S$16.6 million. This is thanks to increased demand for the storage of cord blood and cord lining stem cells and an absence of non-operational finance costs. CEO Wong Chiang Yin said that the group is now “actively exploring acquisition and investment opportunities to augment its market leadership in the region” specifically in diagnostics. And China Medical International (CMIG) has reported a reduced net loss of S$1.1 million for Q3 on revenues that fell 48% to S$382,000. The group continues to suffer stiff competition in China as well as increased regulatory oversight. Plans to acquire the radiology and diagnostic businesses from Clarity Health in Singapore have also fallen through.
 
New Zealand-based cancer diagnostics company, Pacific Edge (PEB) has completed its NZ$21.3 million (US$15.1 million) underwritten 1-for-6 rights offer. It was selling 66.6 million shares at NZ$0.32 per share which is a hefty 26.6% discount to the theoretical ex-rights price of NZ$0.44 per share. Almost three-quarters were taken up. And on Friday, the shortfall bookbuild component was completed at the same price with support from both institutional and other eligible shareholders. The offer was fully underwritten by First NZ Capital Securities.
 
IFR Reuters reports that investment firm TPG Capital has closed a A$135 million (US$104 million) six-year unitranche financing to acquire a controlling stake in Sydney-based full-service contract research organisation Novotech from Mercury Capital. Barings, Nomura and Partners Group funded the unitranche, which also included a A$15 million super-senior revolving credit from HSBC.
 
Following a flurry of Q3 results last week in Singapore, some analyst reports are in. CIMB Research downgrades Parkway Life REIT, which is owned by IHH Healthcare, to “hold” though with a slightly higher target price of S$2.93. “While we still like PLife REIT for its earnings stability with no downside risk for 95% of its gross revenue, share price had outperformed significantly in recent months,” writes analyst Lock Mun Yee. Rachel Tan at DBS Research is a little more bullish. She maintains her “buy” with a raised target price of S$3.10 (US$2.28) at PLife REIT. It “offers one of the strongest earnings visibility profiles among SREITs, with a weighted average lease expiry of close to nine years,” she says. Tan has also upgraded women’s healthcare specialist Singapore O&G (SOG) to “hold” with a raised target price of S$0.52. “Looking forward, we estimate a stronger growth of 14-16% in FY18F-FY19F, largely led by organic growth with contributions from the ramp-up in cancer and paediatrics divisions, contributions from its new fertility division and recovery in O&G and dermatology, as well as inorganic growth from potential m&as given that SOG has been inactive in the m&a space for a while,” she notes. Jarick Seet at RHB Invest downgrades TalkMed Group, a provider of medical oncology and palliative care health care services, to “neutral” though with a higher target price of S$0.72 due to better-than-expected Q3 earnings. And John Cheong at Maybank Kim Eng maintains his “hold” and target price of S$1.05 on medical glove manufacturer Riverstone Holdings saying that the positive outlook has been priced in.
 
The Wall Street Journal reports that private equity firm Blackstone Group is planning to sell its majority stake in a Chinese medical devices manufacturer Xinrong Best Medical Instrument for US$400 million. Morgan Stanley is managing the deal. Founded in 200), Blackstone invested US$100 million in the company in September 2014. Xinrong manufactures orthopaedic devices.
 
ASX-listed G Medical Innovations (GMV) has signed a binding MoU with First Channel (FCL) to distribute its devices in both India and Taiwan. The total value of the deal based on minimum commitments is expected to be US$405 million. HealthInvestor Asia reported on the deal last week.
 
In people news, contract genomics organisation WuXi NextCODE has appointed John Gu as chief digital officer, leading data onboarding for the company's growing China platform. Gu, who joins the company from digital innovation consultancy Silver Sand Technologies, was formerly chief information officer for Baidu, the leading internet service provider and search engine in China. And Suvarn Valaisathien has stepped down from the board of Bumrungrad Hospital, Thailand’s second-largest listed hospital operator. In a statement he said that he was unable to continue due to work pressures. He has been on the board since 2011.
 
And finally, in our must read for the day, Singapore’s minister for health Gan Kim Yong explains why the private sector needs to get behind the National Electronic Health Record System.

Posted on: 13/11/2017 UTC+08:00


News

Paragon Care, a leading distributor and manufacturer supplying medical equipment to hospitals, is to raise A$69.8 million (US$54.6 million) in a fully underwritten offer on the ASX.
Parkway Life REIT, which is owned by IHH Healthcare, is to acquire Konosu Nursing Home Kyoseien, a nursing rehabilitation facility in Greater Tokyo, under a sale-and-leaseback agreement with Iryouhoujin Shadan Kouaikai for ¥1.5 billion (US$13.7 million).
New Zealand-based cancer diagnostics company Pacific Edge (PEB) has entered into an agreement with MediNcrease Health Plans, a US national provider network, to make its bladder cancer diagnostic test available.
Beijing-based paediatric centre Dr Cuiyutao Healthcare has raised Series C plus funding led by New Oriental Education & Technology Group. The size of the funding has not been disclosed, but is understood to be in the millions of US dollars.
Kelantan-based Ain Medicare, which manufactures both blood and renal medical devices as well as pharmaceutical products, has raised M$20 million (US$5.1 million) in a strategic investment from Malaysian government investment company A-BIO.
Anthea Muir has been named chief executive of Australian cosmetic clinic chain Laser Clinics Australia with Paul McClintock as chairman. Muir comes from Luxottica Group while McClintock is best known as the former chairman of Medibank Private.
Harmonicare Medical, the largest private obstetrics and gynaecology specialty hospital group in China, has increased its loan to help the Rmb160 million (US$25.3 million) construction of Wuxi Harmonicare, a new obstetrics and gynaecology hospital in Wuxi, Jiangsu Province.
Higher sales have given a boost to third quarter results at medical rubber glove manufacturer Hartalega Holdings.



Analysis

A new paper from KPMG looks at the disconnect between consumer expectations and the current healthcare experience of patients in Australia.
Gan Kim Yong, Singapore’s minister for health, explains why integrated care is important in the context of an ageing population.
Not having featured before 2015, Chinese investment in Australia’s healthcare sector has surged over the past three years. It has reached A$5.5 billion (US$4.5 billion) across 16 completed deals, according to a new report from KPMG and The University of Sydney Business School.
Michael Griffiths, regional director of healthcare at specialist insurance brokers Howden, explains how insurance is an answer to the region’s healthcare crisis.
Nomaan Mirza, principal equity specialist at the International Finance Corporation, looks at healthcare equity opportunities in emerging markets.
The healthcare industry in Asia-Pacific is expected to grow at 11.1% in 2018, representing one of the fastest growing regions in the world, as the global healthcare economy averages a 4.8% annual growth rate.
Technologist, business leader, and philanthropist Bill Gates explains why global health needs the private sector.
Mitch Beaumont, Prashanth Prasad, Ulrica Sehlstedt and Mandeep Dhillon from international management consultants Arthur D. Little explain how medical technology companies can manage going digital.
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