3i close to £270m Westminster deal

The firm currently has the lead to buy the premium nursing home operation, but may yet face competition from UK and Swedish healthcare groups.

3i, the investment group, is expected to close a deal to buy Westminster Healthcare’s nursing homes division next month. A deal would be worth more than £270m.

Several venture capitalists including Electra Partners Europe and Legal & General Ventures, have expressed an interest in the business. Bupa, the private health group, and 3i remain in the bidding, and 3i has the lead, according to the Sunday Times.

General Healthcare, Britain’s largest private hospital group and the Swedish healthcare group Capio are the trade buyers that could yet make a difference to the outcome. Whoever does complete will be backing a management buyout of Westminster’s premium nursing home service, which runs 5,800 beds in 90 sites across the UK.

Westminster, which is owned by Whitehall, a private equity fund run by Goldman Sachs and New York-based Welsh Carson Anderson & Stowe, is also looking to sell its Priory Healthcare operation, the psychiatric clinics that have treated a number of celebrities.