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Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Saudi’s Fakeeh Care mulls IPO, enlists HSBC – sources

Saudi Arabia’s major private hospital group, Fakeeh Care, is reportedly exploring the option of an initial public offering (IPO) to sell a 30% stake, as disclosed by two anonymous sources familiar with the situation to Reuters.

The family-owned enterprise, boasting medical facilities in Jeddah and Riyadh, has enlisted HSBC to provide advisory services for the potential IPO. Both sources chose to remain anonymous due to the non-public nature of the matter.

At the time of contact on Sunday, Fakeeh Care had not responded to Reuters’ request for comment, and HSBC declined to comment.

Founded in 1978 and named after its late founder Dr. Soliman Fakeeh, the group initiated its first hospital. With a website detailing a bed capacity exceeding 1,400, along with a medical team of over 1,000 doctors and 2,000 nurses, Fakeeh Care holds a significant presence in the healthcare sector.

Riyadh’s initiatives to encourage more family-owned businesses to go public align with broader market reforms intended to diversify revenue streams beyond oil.

The Saudi Exchange, the largest and most liquid stock market in the Arab world, has witnessed an influx of healthcare sector listings, including hospitals like Dr. Sulaiman Al Habib, pharmaceutical group Al Nahdi Medical Co, and generic drugmaker Jamjoom Pharmaceuticals Factory Co.

As a testament to its focus on the sector, Saudi Arabia allocated 189 billion riyals ($50.4 billion) in its 2023 budget to health and social development, tied for the second-highest expenditure alongside education, following the military.

Refinitiv data reveals that companies in the Middle East have raised $5.3 billion in the first half of this year, marking the highest amount in 15 years, except for the exceptional year of 2020, which stood out due to a surge in IPOs.

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