CDH buys China eye-care business

The firm has teamed with China Grand Pharma in a $78m deal.

CDH Investments and healthcare firm China Grand Pharmaceutical will buy a majority stake in contact lens and eye-care business Shanghai Weicon, according to a statement.

The deal values the business at about $100 million, with CDH taking a 19 percent stake at $21 million, and China Grand Pharmaceutical, whose subsidiary Grand Pharmaceutical is manufactures ophthalmic gel and eye drops in China – highly complementary to contact lens products – buying a 52.25 percent stake at $57.75 million.

Lily Liu, founder and chairwoman of Shanghai Weicon, will retain about a 25 percent stake.

The three parties have also agreed to invest a further $15 million to support the company’s growth plans.

“CDH has always focused on helping successful local companies to realise their potential by providing professional experiences, introducing business opportunities and facilitating growth in their respective core business segments,” Frank Xie, managing director at CDH, said in a statement.

“Shanghai Weicon is one of the most successful eye product companies in China, and we are highly confident that the combination of China Grand Pharm and Shanghai Weicon will strengthen China Grand Pharm’s eye business and meanwhile take Shanghai Weicon to a new growth stage by leveraging China Grand Pharm’s extensive distribution channel and experiences in the pharmaceutical industry.”

CDH Investments was founded in 2002 and is one of China’s largest private equity firms, with assets under management exceeding $14 billion as of 31 December 2013.

The firm has grown to include seven business units, private equity, venture capital, real estate, mezzanine and credit, hedge fund, industrial property and private wealth management, and has offices in Hong Kong, Singapore, Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Jakarta and Ho Chi Minh City.