Mid Europa buys Polish healthcare business(3)

A Cornerstone Partners-led consortium of three firms has sold Polish private healthcare operator Lux-Med to Mid Europa Partners, after quadrupling the number of patients on the company’s books.

Central and eastern European buyout specialist Mid Europa Partners has bought Polish private healthcare provider LUX-MED from a Cornerstone Partners-led consortium.

Terms were not disclosed, but a banking source said the price was in excess of €50 million ($68 million), based on standard multiples in the sector. LUX-MED had a turnover of €50 million last year and companies of this type tend to be priced at just over one times sales, he said.

LUX-MED offers outpatient medical care and diagnostic services to corporate and individual clients. It serves over 200,000 patients, with a network across Poland. The consortium first invested in the business in 2002.

Matthew Strassberg, from Mid Europa, said his firm would support management’s plans to expand the business both organically and through acquisitions.

“Private healthcare in Poland is popular because of the poor quality of the state sector. This has been underfunded for a number of years, with underpaid doctors, facilities in poor conditions and waiting times similar to the British National Health Service,” according to Strassberg. By contrast LUX-MED’s facilities were very modern and clean, with highly-educated young doctors, he added.

Marcin Halicki, the chief executive of LUX-MED and a partner at Cornerstone said: “Under our ownership LUX-MED has quadrupled the number of patients, doubled the employment, opened 10 own-branded clinics and acquired 4 captive clinics.”

Deutsche Investitions – und Entwicklungsgesellschaft and Accession Mezzanine, a investment company managed by Mezzanine Management Central Europe, were also part of the selling consortium.

The transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2007.